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Man accidentally pays $13k for 30cm strip of land he thought was a house

There's mistakes, then there's this. Image: Getty

There are mistakes, and then there’s this.

A South Florida man has accidentally spent $13,000 on a 30cm strip of land instead of the house he believed he was purchasing.

Kerville Holness was a first-time auction bidder when he made the mistake. The strip has a real value of only $72 (USD$50) and is only 30cm by 30cm.

Holness bought the land at an online auction of homes which had defaulted on their taxes.

Can he do anything about it?

Officials told the Sun-Sentinel that Holness is stuck with the deal, leaving the Florida man the proud owner of a 30cm by 30cm strip of land which lies between two adjoining villas.

Holness has suggested he may cut through the garage wall to get to his air space, if he was “vindictive enough”, but acknowledged that even then he was unlikely to see any real value from his purchase.

Instead, he wants his money back.

“It’s deception,” Holness said.

“There was no demarcation to show you it’s just a line going through [the villa duplex], even though they have the tools to show that.”


He said the auction site suggested he was bidding on the villa, not the strip of land.

However, the same auction site showed that there was no building value and the site was of a small size.

Holness’ new neighbour, Tina DeFeo expressed surprise at the auction of the land.

“It makes no sense,” she said. “I don’t know how you buy a strip of grass like that.”

DeFeo said she also wouldn’t be paying any money to Holness, and would instead choose to move her mailbox should he decide to charge rent on the land.

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