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brfp blog thoughts from the island

Thoughts from the Island

and research, research, research!

Hey hey, and greetings from my beachy birthday vacation!

It seems I am not great at blogging consistently, and though I like it a lot it seems hard to work in on a regular basis. Those of you who are awesome at this, my hat is off to you! And hello to all!


My husband and I are in Chincoteague this week, and it’s drizzling outside so I’m hanging out in the AC and scrolling Facebook. On a professional site, a colleague is sharing one of the most nightmarish experiences that we can possibly come across. Her buyer looked and looked for a home that would work for her family and her budget, and after a long and arduous search they finally found her one! They placed an offer and the transaction concluded with a settlement. Hooray, right? Well, maybe not this time.

a home with a history

A couple weeks have passed, and this agent received a text. “Did you know that there was a murder-suicide in my home? The last people that lived here!” Whoa.

My colleague was crowd-sourcing for assistance. I mean, what do you say, you know? We have all had situations that took us by surprise, but this was a doozie!

what is the proper response?

I think the answer is more along the lines of what can we learn? How can we make sure that this does not happen in our world? At least to the highest degree possible!

We have never had more information at our fingertips than now. It could not be simpler to find out what may have happened in a home, in a neighborhood, trends in a city, even. This is not to blame anyone! Just to illuminate a truth.

A home purchase is a huge commitment. The internet is our friend!

From flood zones to property lines to sex offenders in the area, to permit trails and normal condition inspections, it is a lot!

And it should be! This is a major commitment.

do your research

So take the time before scheduling your showing to do a drive-by and see if you like the area of a home in person. Try to do this before you even schedule. If you don’t like the looks of your neighbor’s home on a drive-by, it is somewhat unlikely that what you find inside the home will sway you.

Check your State Police’s crime stats, and see what is going on around there. Scope out the sex offender database if your area has one (ours does) and see how you feel about how this prospect might fare for you. Look up the property on FEMA maps and check for yourself if it is in a flood zone that could require insurance.

Last but not least, google the actual address. Has anything happened there that made headlines? If so, what was it, and how long ago? Is it news that you are okay with?

did we mention research?

Let’s face it, the murder-suicide might not bother everyone. I am sure that there are some folks who would not be bothered at all – they would figure that was the past and focus on making memories there for themselves. They would move on.

On the other hand, lots of people would not care to inherit a space with this history, and there are mechanisms for researching. So take the time, and research! We can help with some, but ultimately there will often be things about a property setting or history that will be entirely personal preference.

How would you feel if it were you? In the midst of a real estate purchase, are you prepared to do all of the research on a property in which you have interest?

Do you know what the most important aspects are in your situation?  This is the personal and deep stuff that only you can answer.

We can provide you with the resources and research, but ultimately the final call is yours.

Want to chat more? Just reach out!

Heavily active in and around my hometown of Charlottesville, as well as beautiful Historic Staunton/Augusta where I currently reside. I'm a huge fan of the enjoyable transaction, and aim for creating them in all aspects of my life.

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