Should real estate agents disclose murder?
Modern day haunted houses...
Besides the two anomalies of Texas and California, most states don’t consider psychological stigmas to be material defects to a home, meaning you can purchase a home that hosted a murder, suicide or another gruesome event without even knowing, according to Businessweek.
And now Pennsylvania officially added its name to the list of those states that do not require the seller to tell buyers what happened on the property.
However, just because it's not required by law doesn't mean real estate agents don't reveal these kind of events.
The article explains that since agents often find clients by referral and want happy customers, they usually reveal more than what is required by law.
At the same time, it noted that due to the significant amount of murders and suicides a year, agents could run themselves ragged keeping track of the entire history of every home they list.
“We won’t take the listing if the seller won’t let us disclose that a homicide or suicide took place,” says Matt Russo of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox & Roach Realtors in Media, Penn. Two years ago, he says, he sold a house that had been the scene of a suicide by hanging. He didn’t know about the death, but the buyer found out through the local grapevine and didn’t care. Other buyers can be more put-off. “I can’t tell you how many first-time home buyers ask if the house is haunted,” Russo says.