An 81-year-old woman facing eviction from her home in the Basque Country has been given the best Christmas present ever when a neighbour bought the property so that she could carry on living there.
Maria Angeles, who lost her son after he had borrowed money, was horrified when she found out that he had not paid the EUR 61,000 that he had taken out using her home as collateral.
With no way of paying the money, the debt, which was borrowed at a rate of 12.5 per cent, spiralled to over EUR 100,000.
The court order ruled that unless it is paid, the house will be sold and she will have to move out.
But when locals heard about it, they started a fundraiser, selling off items to try and get the cash to pay the debt.
The elderly woman had been living in the area for 30 years and had told her son she would be happy to underwrite a loan in 2012, despite the exorbitant rate over a five-year term.
But 18 months later, he died for reasons not given, and unbeknown to her the debt which was not being paid continued to accrue interest until the lender turned up and demanded repayment in full in 2021.
Lawyers for the woman who volunteered to help alleged that Reno Amussement S.L., the lender, was applying an unfair “early maturity” clause.
Then just before Christmas, an unnamed neighbour of the octogenarian announced that as it was a season of goodwill, they were going to buy the house so she can stay there for the rest of her life.
Maria told local media: “I feel very happy, I have gained a lot in health.”
“I can’t thank you enough for buyng me the property so that I can calmly live in my house until I die.”