Buyer Beware: stigmatized property for sale.
Picture this: you’re about to close on your dream home when you discover something you find disturbing ...someone died in the home! Or, even worse, your dream home comes with long told tales of being haunted!
Here, we’ll cover the different types of stigmatized property so you can decide how you feel about the possibility of purchasing one.
This kind of stigmatized property could be the site of a haunting, ghost sightings, or any other unexplained, mysterious events.
Some states require that murders and suicides which took place on the property be disclosed to the buyers. However, most of these laws have a “statute of limitations” attached to them.
For example, California only requires that the deaths be disclosed if they took place within the last three years. However, Florida state law doesn’t mandate disclosure at all. In North Carolina, sellers and agents do not have to volunteer information, but if the buyer asks a direct question, they have to answer truthfully.
Many states also require that other criminal activity that occurred in the home be disclosed to potential buyers, such as drug dealing or prostitution.
Some states require that the buyers be made aware of any previous owner’s extensive debt. This way, if the receive any calls or visits from creditors, it’s not totally out of the blue.
This isn’t really a “bad” type of stigmatized property, but it’s always something that required full disclosure.
For example, if you were to purchase the Home Alone house, or “murder house” from American Horror Story, you would want to know about the home’s fame, just because fans coming to see the property could disrupt your daily life.
What Should You Do When Buying Stigmatized Property
Remember, aside from a believed haunting, many of these perceived stigmatizing details are likely to have a documented trail and exist on public record so do your research. As always be sure to partner with your Realtor to discover the specific disclosure laws affecting you. The best course of action is to ask your agent about any concerns that may present a problem for you.
Once discovered, you can decide if you want to walk away from the property, or simply ask for a reduced purchase price because of the hassle the stigma might present.
If you have any questions or concerns about buying a stigmatized property, our agents are always willing to go over your options with you! Contact us today!