In last Sunday's paper there was an article about the "special" difficulties of selling a home with a "sordid past." It is interesting because all homes have "history"----even the new ones will have some construction stories that would prove interesting---if we ever found out about them. For example the worker that got rushed to the hospital when he fell on a piece of rebar sticking out of the footing, or (as happened to one of my workers) a worker who cut an artery in his hand with a utility knife and proceeded to spray blood all over the newly painted walls, ceiling and floor (at least it was in the bathroom).
Would these things keep someone from buying the house? Probably not, they would just add "flavor" to the soup. But what if several of the workmen or a family in the home had been viciously murdered? This might be more difficult and would require either some special "spin" or out-and-out omission of the facts.
Perhaps some of you agents can chime in and tell me if that is something that has to be disclosed or not.
What I find interesting is that these types of things are all a matter of "spin" and "relativity." For example let's take a home where some heinous crime/murder took place 50 or 100 years ago----then the event almost can become a selling point---as people would be buying a bit of history and intrigue. I know a house here in Seattle that supposedly has a tree where someone was hanged 100 years ago----I doubt that this fact would keep anyone from buying this piece of property today. Now if the hanging happened in our life time---in real time---it very likely might. Although, it seems that there are people into all sorts of novelties these days.
There was a movie called "Crash" starring James Spader and Holly Hunter (previous to the awesome one about illegal immigrants) where there were these "clubs" of people that preferred to work in morgues and that would create auto crashes so that they could witness first hand----death, dying and serious injury. Now these people would be a great pool of people to seek out to buy houses with "sordid pasts."
I have a question? Would you rather live in a house where someone had been murdered or where there had been a Meth lab? Most of you are probably saying "neither." At some point, there will always be someone that will be able to "spin" the story of the house into something their mind can accept. What kinds of stories can we make up about what went on in this home?
PS, for those of you that are new to my blog (or for some other "unexplained" reason have never noticed) all pictures and smiley-face inserts (emoticons) have messages that show up when you point at them with your cursor.
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WA State, Home Inspector Advisory Licensing Board