T.O. claims Buffalo residents' fear of drama is affecting his housing hunt

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Here's a potential first to add to a homeowner's list of "not in my backyard" complaints: Terrell Owens.

The high-profile Bills wide receiver's search for a place to live in the Buffalo area has hit a snag after Owens said he was denied a chance to rent a home in Orchard Park because of the potential "drama" he might bring to the neighborhood.

Owens first announced what happened late Tuesday night by posting a message on his Twitter.com site. The message read that he's "tripping about residents" who won't rent a home to him because they "(don't) want any drama (in) their neighborhood!! LOL!!! Wow!!."

Owens then went into further detail about his search -- describing the snub as no big deal -- following a voluntary minicamp practice Wednesday.

"They didn't want me to rent this spot because of the extra or added attention that I may bring," said Owens, who was informed of the news after a real-estate agent and his bodyguard viewed the property. Referring to his real-estate agent, Owens added, "In her words, she said, 'Drama.' I thought it was funny."

Perhaps, Owens added, the owners aren't Bills or T.O. fans.

The place in question is a six-bedroom home, located at 1 Deer Run in Orchard Park, that lists for $489,397. It's also available for rent and close to Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Real-estate agent Bob Wozniak disputed Owens' complaint.

"I don't know how it all got started," said Wozniak, who added that his clients are more than willing to have Owens tour the house.

"He's got the key to the city," Wozniak said, referring to Owens receiving the key to Buffalo last month. "I'd like to give him a key to buy a house."

Owens' house-hunting search now is into its second month since he signed a one-year, $6.5 million contract with the Bills in March, a few days after being released by the Dallas Cowboys. He has toured homes and condominiums in Orchard Park, on Buffalo's waterfront and in the city's northern suburbs.

He's scheduled to continue house-hunting Wednesday.

Owens owns homes in Miami, Atlanta, Dallas and Moorestown, N.J., and insisted he's generally considered to be a good neighbor.

"Well, anywhere I go, there's always a little extra added attention. That just comes with the territory," Owens said. "But I don't think anywhere that I've lived has there ever been a problem."

Of course, Owens added, there was the one time in November 2005 when he did sit-ups and held a news conference on the front lawn of his home in Moorestown after being suspended by the Philadelphia Eagles.

"And even then, my neighbors, they didn't complain," Owens said.

The upside to being snubbed for Owens is the numerous responses he received to his Twitter post.

"I do appreciate that a lot of people have invited me to move into their homes and in their neighborhoods," Owens said. "So at least I know I'll have somewhere to stay during the year."

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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