by Michael H. Wasserman
Home buyers on the hunt for information about a prospective new home have a new arrow in their quiver - DiedinHouse.com. This web site provides a service just exactly as its name suggests. Customers willing to pay a nominal fee ($11.99) receive a report on whether or not anyone has ever died at a given United States address.
Does this matter? I suppose that depends on how curious any given buyer (or homeowner) is about such macabre things. This could certainly effect one's comfort level living at the scene of a past crime or other tragedy. And certainly, there is the money thing - according to Trulia (as reported in Forbes) a prior death or violent crime in a home can reduce its value by up to 30%!
Illinois home sellers have no duty to tell prospective buyers about a home's violent past or about deaths that have taken place there. In fact there are only three states of our 50 that impose any duty to disclose such events within 1-3 years of a purchase date. Only fifteen have laws requiring a seller to disclose IF the buyer asks.