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Dont Get Stuck Having To Deal With The Sellers Household Hazardous Wastes - After You Move In!
I have a confession to make!
I was just outside with Frankie (my dog) and noticed I still had an old car battery sitting by the foundation, at the rear of my house.
Yes, I'll admit it's not right, and quite environmentally insensitive for me to have it there. However, even though I know I should have disposed of it by now, that fact is, it's still there. Seeing it there prompted me to think about, if I was selling my home, how easy something like that would be to 'forget' about and leave behind - for the buyers to deal with.
It also prompted me to recall the 3-4 spent automobile tires, and rims, that I found in a basement closet - after we had moved in!
It reminded me of all the paint cans, stain cans and a host of other household hazardous waste that was left behind for me to deal with and dispose of properly.
All innocent looking, sitting there on a shelf or in a corner of the basement, in a closet, under a sink, in the attic, or in the garage - stored neatly between the wall studs. There are lots of places such household hazardous wastes (HHW) can be found.
I don't believe they were left here intentionally or with malice. Rather, I imagine they were left here as a gesture of goodwill - that perhaps it's something I would be able to use. Problem is, the sellers likely hadn't used any of the stuff during the waning years they were here. What made them think I would use the stuff?
Luckily, the municipality I live in has a "Household Hazardous Waste Collection Program" that homeowners can take advantage of without having to pay. I urge you to check out the link above and see exactly what qualifies or is considered to be HHW - I guarantee it will be an eye-opener for you.
Although I was able to dispose of the typical HHW without being charged, I did have to take time out on the designated Saturday to do something that the sellers should have done - before they left.
I also didn't get out of it without having to pay anything. I was required to pay for the disposal of the tires the seller had so graciously left behind since those needed to go directly to the landfill.
Which brings me to the point of this post...
Not many homebuyers even think about this when they're looking at a home.
This is one of the reasons why, as a prospective - and eventually serious buyer - you should not be simply herded through the home you're looking to purchase like lost sheep.
You should insist on spending as much time as you can, investigating as many nooks and crannies as you can. Take notice of what you see and really process it. Seeing tires in the basement isn't an uncommon occurrence. But assuming they won't be there after you buy the home is.
Don't assume anything!
Be specific in your questions and concerns - no matter how trivial you think they may be.
I strongly urge you to visit: http://www.homebuyerdefenseguide.com/home-buying-strategies/hazwaste.html
and see what HHW consists of, become familiar with the many items included as HHW and what you will need to do to dispose of any that is left behind.
Maybe I'll bring that battery to the landfill right now...
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Don Berthiaume gives you the questions you need to ask when buying a home. For more details, and for a free 4-part mini-course in home buying, visit this site now: Home Buying Guide
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