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Old 01-28-2013, 03:44 PM
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Default Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

Think it's haunted?Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past - Yahoo! News



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A Pennsylvania woman has appealed to the state Supreme Court in her suit against a home seller and real estate agent who failed to disclose that a murder-suicide had taken place in the home she purchased.

When Janet Milliken, 59, moved from California after her husband died, she had hoped to start a new life with her two teenage children in Pennsylvania near her family.

She bought a home in Thornton, Pa., for $610,000 in June 2007. She learned a few weeks after she moved in from a next-door neighbor that a murder-suicide had occurred the year before in her home.

She sued the seller and the real estate agent for fraud and misrepresentation, saying they made a "deliberate choice not to disclose the home's recent past," according to a court document.

The trial judge granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants, saying state law does not require agents to disclose such events.

Then in December 2012, a panel of the state appeals court affirmed that decision, though with a nearly split decision.

The matter dates back to Feb. 11. 2006, when a previous homeowner, Konstantinos Koumboulis, allegedly shot and killed his wife, then shot himself in the master bedroom.

Joseph and Kathleen Jacono had bought the home Oct. 31, 2006, knowing of the murder-suicide, for $450,000. They later sold it to Milliken, who wants the transaction rescinded and her money back.

Filing a petition to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania last week with the hope of arguing the case further, the attorney for Milliken, Tim Rayne, said they "hope to have Pennsylvania recognize that having a horrific event occur within a property can be just as damaging and troubling to a future homeowner as a physical defect, or perhaps even more so."

"Having a gunshot murder-suicide committed within the home is much more devastating than having a small leak concealed by the previous homeowner," Rayne said. "Physical defects can be fixed. Troubling events that could and did occur in this home could never go away."

Rayne said sellers should be required to disclose troubling events "at least for some period of time."

Abraham Reich, the attorney for the Jaconos and their agent with Re/Max, said, "The majority, en banc [full-court] opinion of the Superior Court was well reasoned and consistent with years of industry practice in Pennsylvania.

"While the issue is interesting, the number of times it comes up does not warrant Supreme Court review," Reich said. "The Superior Court opinion provides guidance for any real estate transaction in the future and puts to rest the uncertainty of whether a seller has a duty to disclose a murder-suicide or any other type 'psychological damage.' In my opinion, the result is a good one."

Rayne said Milliken, 59, was "disturbed" when she learned of her home's history from a neighbor. "As she was struggling what and if to tell the kids," he said, her children's friends visited the home for Halloween and told the children about the murder-suicide.

"They were very upset upon learning about it and disturbed about the whole situation," Rayne said.

"They were dealing with the death of a father and husband and wanted to move closer to family, and then this happened to them," he said. "It was a tragedy all around."

Rayne said Milliken and her children are still living in the home. He said they would prefer to move out of the home but can't afford to do so without selling it.

"They feel that if they sold it, through good conscience they would have to disclose," Rayne said, "so it would negatively impact the value."
BOO!
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:46 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

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I'd rather have a possible 'ghost' than a leaky pipe.
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:50 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

When I was a kid in England, the house we rented was said to be haunted.

It had two 'missing' rooms....the spaces were there but no way in..... and a hidden staircase between the 3rd floor linen closet and the maids pantry.


We loved it!
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:57 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

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When I was a kid in England, the house we rented was said to be haunted.

It had two 'missing' rooms....the spaces were there but no way in..... and a hidden staircase between the 3rd floor linen closet and the maids pantry.


We loved it!


That sounds cool. If they were missing how did you know they were there? Sorry I'm easily confused.
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:58 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

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Rayne said sellers should be required to disclose troubling events "at least for some period of time."
Hmm, how long does a ghost need to move out? Maybe she should just charge them rent.
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:03 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

The blood dripping from the cieling could get to be a drag . . .
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:04 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

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That sounds cool. If they were missing how did you know they were there? Sorry I'm easily confused.
There were spaces between rooms that had no way in or out. Room size spaces. And in an 18 century house, those were BIG rooms.

One was on the 3rd floor. My dad actually used ladders and scaffolding to climb up and try to see in the windows, but they had been boarded up from the inside.

Of course, my sister and I decided that that was because that room is where one of the previous owners had 'sealed in' his wife/mistress.
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:09 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

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There were spaces between rooms that had no way in or out. Room size spaces. And in an 18 century house, those were BIG rooms.

One was on the 3rd floor. My dad actually used ladders and scaffolding to climb up and try to see in the windows, but they had been boarded up from the inside.

Of course, my sister and I decided that that was because that room is where one of the previous owners had 'sealed in' his wife/mistress.
That sounds like a good plot for a story. Do you have any pictures of it?
I wish my house were that big (or at least had more room for litter boxes.)
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:14 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

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That sounds like a good plot for a story. Do you have any pictures of it?
I wish my house were that big (or at least had more room for litter boxes.)
I wish. I was 7 at the time, I'm 54 now. It was a great house for playing hide and seek.

3 floors, apx 2000 square feet each, and an attic. I'd hate to have to pay to heat it.

I designated a spare bedroom the 'litter box room'. Keeps the litter under control and really discourages guests from staying.
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:18 PM
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Default Re: Pa. Homeowner Sues Seller Over Home's Bloody Past

I can't believe that someone would actually sue over that ****ing bull****
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