It's a nightmare for people who own property they want to rent out - people breaking into and living in a home or apartment without paying rent.
And, in many cases, it can take two months before a landlord can evict the people from his or her property.
A home in Oildale was taken over by a family of squatters who moved in, didn't pay rent, and pretty much tore the place apart.
The landlord, Tom Ny, says another family used to live there and did pay rent, but they moved out without telling him. Then, Ny says, they told a friend the property would be vacant, and she and four children moved in.
Ny says that family absolutely trashed the place, leaving behind broken windows, holes in the wall, and trash on the floors.
Sometimes law enforcement is able to kick out squatters for trespassing. But, California law doesn't allow that sort of immediate action in every case.
So, in many cases a landlord has to turn to the court system to evict a squatter.
"I have approximately 103 units in Oildale, only in Oildale," said Ny. "I'm in court probably every three weeks now evicting them. I probably have four or five squatters or six squatters, and they move in fast. Somebody moves out and I don't know or they don't tell us. Next thing you know, they've got furniture, they've got everything in there."
Ny says it costs him $500 in legal fees to evict someone. And, he says it can take up to 60 days before he's able to legally evict someone, which means he also loses out on rent.
In the case of the Oildale home in question, rent runs $900 a month, so together with legal fees that's $2,300 dollars Ny is out. And, that doesn't even includes the cost to repair damages done by squatters.
Ny says he now hesitates before putting a "For Rent" sign in the yards of his properties because he believes it's just inviting people to break in and squat in his homes.