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Stigmatized - Mom was in the freezer, neatly wrapped!

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airphoto

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
It's true!

Sonny literally butchered Mom, wrapped her neatly and put her in the freezer .. collected her sociable security checks for some time ..

We've joked about this, but looks like I'm getting the appraisal assignment! Obviously gonna do it first, as if no stigma. No idea where to go from there other than a disclaimer: "Subject may require a significant marketing time due to the stigma, or a significant reduction from it's unstigmatized market valuation."

Anybody else with actual experience to help me along with this?
 

wyecoyote

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Gvmt Agency, FNMA, HUD, VA etc.
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Washington
The valuation of Detrimental Conditions class from the AI was very helpfull in this. The thing you have to do in researching this is find properties were this has happened some form of murder in the property. In essence what you have to do is find your comparable(s) that have had murders appraise them without the stigma and what they actually sold for with the stigma. This will give you a percentage ie house a murder market value prior to stigma $100K actual sale $85K house two prior value $120K post stigma sale $110K that will give the stigma attached to the property. This allows a percent range that can be attached to the property. The helpfull thing is to use historical sales as pointed out in the class typical historical percentages remain the same. He had several case studies showing the effects from this as well. The other thing that it gets (the DC class) into is the relative publicity of the crime scene local, reginonal and national. The other that it shows is that with time the public tends to forget. There were some very good case studies on this. The instructor who is from Calif this is all he does for a living DC type of properties. This was one to the best classess I have taken I don't have the instructor's name but my understanding is that he is the only one that currently teaches it and as he stated if you have any problems contact him.

Ryan
 

Lee in L.A.

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
I did a house several years ago that was selling for maybe $50,000 below market, in I think the $300k range. The files long gone by now. It was on Spyglass Hill (I think) in Whittier.

It was vacant, it looked fine, no blood or ghost particles I saw. :) Nobody told me anything unusual, I think I met the buyer there, and don't think it was in MLS. Sold at auction I'm thinking. But, wondering why it was selling so low, made a few calls and found out the house had a "reputation".

There was a MURDER SUICIDEby the prior owners, in the house. 8O

Eventually we decided to put the indicated value by market approach at whatever the comps were, say $360,000, and at the bottom put the estimate of market value at the sale price $310,000 or something. We didn't have any murder house comps. :(

Then a bunch of explanation basically saying the estimate was lower than would appear indicated by the comps, due to the stigma of the MS. And since it was exposed to the market, and sold at $310,000 then the stigma is $50,000 at this time.

Eventually it will probably go away. Or if it's too notorious, like OJ Simpsons house, or that Heavens Gate Looney cult, someone bought each of those, and tore them down. Although Nicole Brown Simpsons condo got relandscaped and whatnot, looks totally different, and people passing by to see it are not many. So said the radio, I never went to see that. Why would you? :? I'm a person not a vulture. :lol:

I don't believe the LO was too thrilled with the comments, but it didn't come in low at least. I know this is just anecdotal, but hope it helps. Maybe you'll be lucky :? :?: and have a murder house comp.

Now I'm wishing I had kept a copy of that report.
 

Rich Heyn

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Michigan
Ryan:

My guess is that the instructor you referenced is Randall Bell from Irvine, CA. Name sound familiar? Randy is a top-notch instructor who specializes in this sort of thing. He also has an excellent seminar on Real Estate Disclosure.

Rich Heyn
 

wyecoyote

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Gvmt Agency, FNMA, HUD, VA etc.
State
Washington
Could very well have been Randall Bell. I checked the AI website last night but could not find anything.
 

xmrdfghap

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
General Public
State
Florida
Bill, are the appliances included in the sale?

How did the mom die? Was she murdered or simply stored after she died? If the latter, I doubt there will much stigma attached.......people die in homes all the time......it is just that their burial takes place a bit quicker.

If she were murdered, I would comp other murder houses and grid homes in nearby communities where murders had taken place.
 

airphoto

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
Greg,

Unfortunately, my memory lapses .. but I believe she was terminated. It's a two-family house, and, I believe, the tenant was complicant in knowing what was going on. Unfortunately, a lil country village of under 2,000 people .. dunno that there are any other murder/death comps known so such is not a real possiblity ..

Presume that the offending freezer has been removed, but won't know for sure til 24 June, when the out-of-town relatives are due to inventory personal possessions. As such a small town, knowledge is, of course, rampant as to the circumstances .. for all I know might even improve the valuation.
 

Don Clark

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Virginia
8)

I have a copy of Mr. Bells book at work. It has several examples of such murders, and sale after the murder such as the OJ Simpson case. I believe it is called damaged properties available from the AI.

Remember, in the Simpson case the property would not sell at all. The local Realtor and her daughter even moved in for awhile in an attempt to give it a better atmosphere, all to no avail. I believe it was purchased far below market, torn down, and something else built in it's case.

Contact me if you want and I will give you the details, or tell you how to order the book.

BTW, a few years ago a Realtor went to list a house at the invitation of the property owner, a female. On arrival, the agent rang the door bell, was greeted at the door by an exasperated owner who said she was very sorry but would the agent mind waiting in the living room while she finished her meeting with her "Sceance"(Hope that is spelled right) group. The agent was mildly startled but readily agreed, went to the kitchen where coffee was available for the guest, and took her cup and sat in the living room by the fireplace where she was soon joined by a Golden Retriever. Soon the owner came in, apolagized for making the agent wait. The agent assured the owner that it was quite alright, that she had a lovely wait with her Golden Retriever who allowed her to pat it's head. "What Golden Retriever the owner asked? " "I don't have a dog, and there has not been a dog in the house since the fire that killed the previous owner". The agent mumble an apollogy about just remembering somewhere else she had to be, left and never came back. PS True story.

Don
[email protected]
 

Joker

Elite Member
Joined
May 28, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Ohio
The property is only negatively impacted by the events if the market perceives a difference between that property and one that did not have such macabe events. Just a suggestion, if you don't have any murder comps to work with and especially since it is an income producing property, consider this. Will someone be willing to rent the home? (People will rent anything) If so, for how much? the rental market is willing to pay the same rent for the property and there is therefore no reduction in net income, there is no stigma. If the apt would ordinarily rent for $500 per month and now it can only be rented for $300 per month, it's easy to determine the effect of the stigma. I took a couple of classes from a Frank Harrison of Illinois who said he did this method in appraising some sort of Jeffrey Dahmer house. Personally, I never have had to do it, but it makes sense to me.
 

AC King

Sophomore Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
As a broker, I listed and sold a condo several years ago where the tenant committed suicide. Listed and sold at market value. Property was cleaned and made move-in ready. Co-op agent was buyer's broker. Information was provided buyer about the suicide.

As an appraiser, I appraised a house last year where an intruder entered and killed two people. Did not receive a lot of publicity other than locally. I did the appraisal for a listing agent for market value. Did not have other comps with similar circumstances. Made some CYA comments in report and formed opinion of value without stigimatization. Property sold relatively soon afterward close to my opinion of value subject to replacing the carpet that was removed due to blood stains and repairing garage support damaged when intruder left the property in the stolen car.

Point is: because something tragic happened in a residence, it is not automatically stigmatized in the minds of the general market participants -the buyers and sellers. If it is a buyer's market, may be a negotiating point. If it is a seller's market, may not make any difference to the potential buying public.
 
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