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Reno, Home Buyer in

How long do you have to disclose that your house was once a meth lab?

Asked by Reno, Tue Nov 6, 2007

I'm buying a home that was once a meth lab. It has been stripped down to the studs and has been given a clean swipe by the health dept. I am obtaining the property at an obvious discount which I'l pass on when I sell. My question is how much time (if any) can pass when I don't have to disclose my knoledge that the property was once used as a meth lab?

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My biggest concern would be some one knocking at my door at god knows what hour looking for a couple of pounds of this stuff! What if this guy stiffed one of the big players in the cartel and they sent in a hit team or worse yet, the FEDS! But I agree with Jim, plus the old adage if you think you should disclose--DISCLOSE!! You'll sleep a whole lot better.
Have some exorcism or spiritual healer give it the once over too!
2 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Isn't it ironic that a meth lab house would be getting "rehabbed"?? Or is it just me?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Frame it in a positive way?
Great potential---could be a meth lab!!

You guys are way over exposing your sellers to negative pricing....read the law...a meth lab is not a disclosable item..unless your seller is running it! Even then wouldn't the buyers qualify for a higher mortgage due to the income?lol
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Yikes...if it were my listing, I would put that in the agent remarks right in the MLS, but also state it has been given a clearance by the health department. For what time period after the remediation do you have to disclose that? That will depend on the state you are in.
Web Reference: http://www.erinattardi.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Erin Stumpf…, Real Estate Pro in Sacramento, CA
MVP'08
Contact
Looks like state to state, bud. Here are some links for you. In some articles it looks like forever! Other give exemptions IF the property was certifiably cleaned to state specs. Sorry that I couldn't be of more help.

http://www.denverpost.com/business/ci_5139261
http://www.kci.org/meth_info/meth_labs/state_laws.htm
http://www.post-gazette.com/homes/20030117realcolp8.asp
http://www.rockymountainnews.com/drmn/government/article/0,2777…
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
I'll let the others discuss possible legal ramifications of non-disclousre. I am choosing to remind you of your moral obligation as a human being to observe the golden rule.

If you were the purchaser that was going to live in that house with your children, would you want full disclosure of the house's history? Or would you want to buy from someone who would obscure the facts for the sake of profit.

Ask yourself, Reno, "Am I basically an honest person? Or, am I basically a cheat?"
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Jim Walker, Real Estate Pro in Carmichael, CA
MVP'08
Contact
Michael: I can't believe I didn't beat you to that one!!!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Well, 'Ol Chuck "Bleedin Gums" Benedon, there is a reason I don't read previous posts. And there is a reason I don't trust people that wear sunglasses in church.

My answer stands.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Max, [G] you are wrong. Guess you didn't read the links I posted. Not every state has the disclosure law, yet, but they are all working on it in their respective legislatures. It is, without a doubt, illegal in some places to NOT disclose. As far as talking to lawyers is concerned, don't waste your money. Call your state's health dept and ask. Lawyers will NEVER tell you the odds of winning or losing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
As stated below, only a local attorney can give you a firm answer. Here's my advice: even if the attorney says that you don't have to do so, disclose it anyway. Get it in writing from the Health Dept BEFORE you close on the home, and include this as an exhibit to your Seller's disclosure when you sell. Anyone can sue you. The attorney can only tell you if they are likely to win or not. Even if they are unlikely to win, it can be very, very time consuming. Also, if your state does not allow recovery of legal expenses in such instances, very, very expensive. If you disclose it, they can never come after you over this. Frame it in a positive way, with the written pass from the Health Dept. If you do not disclose this, and the buyer finds out, you may lose the deal.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Actually, you don't have to disclose that. You don't have to disclose that there was a mass murder there either. You do have to let them know if you had termites...go figure
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Probably forever. I would guess that would be a material fact regarding the property.
Web Reference: http://getprequalified.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
That is a loaded question...if it is being rehabbed, people will be buying the renovated property, not the shell that had illegal substances in it.
You are selling real estate, not the contents nor the occupants of the building in the past.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
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