In Pennsylvania Do You Have to Disclose a Death When Selling Your Home?
If buying or selling a home in Pennsylvania is in your future, you're likely well versed the entire process from the initial offer to closing. But are you aware that disclosing a death in the home may be required? Here's what you need to know.
Property Disclosure Documents
No matter how perfect a house looks on the outside, there is often property information a buyer needs to disclose before the sale can go through. Property disclosure documents reveal known structural issues, neighborhood nuisances, hazards, HOA details, water damage, notable repairs made to the home and death in the home.
Rules for reporting a death in the home vary by state, and variations in rules may include:
- Timeframe: When the death occurred.
- How the person passed away: If the death occurred naturally versus due to negligence on the property.
- Hauntings: If the seller has knowledge that the property is being haunted by the dead.
So, what are the rules in Pennsylvania? Here are the details:
From the article by Kathy Catlin Davis featured on Nolo.com via the follow link
Selling a Pennsylvania Home: What Are My Disclosure Obligations? | Nolo
“The Pennsylvania Superior Court found (in a case called Milliken v. Jacono, 2012 PA Super 284), that sellers do not have to disclose this type of information to buyers. The house at issue had been the site of a murder/suicide, which the sellers had purchased from the deceased owners' estate. Despite court decisions in other states holding that psychological damage did need to be disclosed, the Pennsylvania court came to the opposite conclusion. So, in Pennsylvania, the law continues to require sellers to disclose only identifiable damage.”
While psychological damage does not need to be disclosed, material damage is an entirely different argument. Bio-One technicians have seen and remediated the after effects of a death in a home that if left untouched would certainly cause material damage.
For a state-by-state guide on disclosure laws we recommend visiting this resource on Nolo.com.
Remediating After a Death in a Home
If a death recently occurred in the home you're hoping to purchase, there may have been biohazards from bloodborne pathogens that required remediation. Consider asking the seller how the death was remediated to ensure proper steps were taken. Remediation processes may vary depending on the location of the death, how the death occurred, types of flooring, and if the death was undiscovered for days or weeks.
Bio-One technicians are trained and equipped to properly disinfect biohazards from bloodborne pathogens, and we ensure safe biohazard material handling and disposal. Once the entire area is cleaned of blood and body fluids, we also help property owners restore the location to its pre-incident state.
If you are selling a home and need a biohazard remediated or want to ensure remediation was done correctly, give Bio-One of Pittsburgh a call. Our experts not only contain and disinfect the dangerous biological materials, we carry out our work in a caring and private manner.
Bio-One of Pittsburgh can be reached 24/7 at