JESSICA SILVER-GREENBERG, New York Times

Kicking Down Doors 2Barry Tatum returned to his home in Chicago in December to find that his front and back doors had been torn from their hinges, leaving his possessions exposed to the frigid winds that whipped through his neighborhood.

Terrified that he had been robbed, Mr. Tatum, who had fallen behind on his Bank of America mortgage, raced inside only to discover an unlikely source of the break-in, he said: a subcontractor for a property management firm hired by the bank. A letter from the subcontractor informed Mr. Tatum that the bank had the right to enter and secure the property, according to a copy reviewed by The New York Times.

“It’s the most depressing thing,” said Mr. Tatum, who ultimately got the management firm, Safeguard Properties, to replace the doors.

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