Nearly nine years after her home was rebuilt on national television, Arlene Nickless is turning in her keys.
The Holt resident must leave her Eifert Road home by Monday after years of struggling to manage the mortgage.
Designers with ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" — with the help of hundreds of volunteers — built the home in 2008 following the death of Tim Nickless, her husband of 18 years.
The home was foreclosed on in September, and has been up for online auction for weeks.
On Sunday, cardboard boxes were stacked on the dark hardwood floors once showcased in nationwide broadcasts. The 2009 Ford Flex gifted with the home sat in the driveway hooked to a moving trailer. And the overwhelming feeling a tearful Arlene Nickless had all those years ago took on a different tenor.
“When I stepped out of the house the day Extreme Makeover came, you will see me say ‘I can’t believe this is happening,’” she said. “And, truthfully, that’s what I feel right now: I can’t believe this is happening.”
Nickless is quick to defend the ABC show, whose lavish rebuilds have, in some cases, led to foreclosure because of increased property taxes and pricey utilities. She's less complimentary of her mortgage servicer that is now being targeted by state regulators.
She said her home’s foreclosure resulted from an ongoing struggle to manage the property’s pre-makeover mortgage — a balance that rested at about $30,000 after the 2008 makeover, but had ballooned to at least $113,000 by the end of 2016.