Buying Meth Houses

One of the worst things a potential home buyer can do is buy a meth house, whether it has been a past meth lab or just been contaminated from meth smoking. Most people buying a home will have a certified home inspector look for things like plumbing or electrical problems, lack of insulation, foundation cracks, heating and air conditioning concerns, etc. but most buyers fail to have their future home inspected for methamphetamine contaminates.

You need to protect yourself. No one is going to do it for you.

Certain levels of meth can cause serious illness, birth defects or even kill and yet most buyers do not have their homes tested usually because a realtor does not mention it or to save a few hundred dollars. Some realtors do not want to mess up the sale and therefore do the buyer a big injustice by not making the suggestion. Sometimes not getting a meth test is justified because the home is clean or in a good area. What many do not realize is that many of the meth labs have been located in “well to do” residential neighborhoods. What better place to hide a lab than in suburban America? It has been reported that the most likely user of meth is usually under the age of 35. It was reported that if you smoke meth once, you have a 90% chance of getting addicted to it.

Every home bought and every apartment moved into should be tested. There are a couple ways to go about having it tested:

The obvious signs are yellow discoloration on walls, ceilings, floors, drains, sinks and showers. Staining or etching marks on sinks, toilets, bathtubs or stoves should be concerns. If added ventilation systems are located over work benches, in attics or basements it is a bad sign. If smoke detectors have been removed or taped off it is not good. If the home or apartment has unusual chemical odors such as paint thinner or chlorine or if you find trapdoors or hidden rooms, these are warning signs. Blue discoloration on valves or propane tanks and fire extinguishers could also cause concerns.

On the outside of the property if they have added extensive security measures such as “No trespassing or Beware of Dog signs” or excessive fencing, large trees or shrubs hiding windows and parts of the yard, it could have been a meth house. If you see burn piles in the yard, buried trash with signs of meth ingredients or areas in the yard where chemicals might have killed grass, dead spots or burns it might be a sign.

The problem with many properties is the owners have tried to clean up any trash, smells, stains by painting or replacing carpets, etc. They might be knowingly covering up a problem or unknowingly covering it up. Property owners know if they are aware of a meth problem, they should disclose it. If they find they have had this type of problem it is going to cost anywhere from a few thousand dollars on the cleanup to tens of thousands of dollars.

You might understand why a property owner does not want to know why their tenants were arrested or why the property looks or smells bad when their tenant moves out unannounced in the middle of the night.

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