Selling a Home That Contains Asbestos
The process of selling your home is never easy. It involves weeks and months during which your life is laid bare to strangers who parade through the vestibules of your memory scowling at this and snickering at that until one finally signs on the dotted line. Under normal circumstances the whole thing is difficult enough, but if you’re trying to sell a home that contains asbestos the process becomes yet more problematic. Since almost every adult on planet earth is aware of the dangers asbestos poses, it’s not going to be an easy sell. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be done.
Stay Calm and Grounded
- Full Disclosure – You are legally mandated to disclose to any potential buyer that the house contains asbestos. Don’t worry. Yours is not the only home to be so encumbered. Asbestos was used in hundreds of products during the early and mid-20th century and many of those products found their way into homes built at this time. There are then scores of homes in every city, borough and hamlet that contain asbestos. Any veteran home shopper has likely had to deal with the issue prior to walking through your door.
- Being Real About the Threat – While many people will recoil when they hear the word others will simply want a real-world assessment of the threat posed by the asbestos in your home. Provide it for them. Remember, it’s not sugar-coating to say that asbestos isn’t always dangerous. It’s not. It’s only when it takes on a dust-like quality and can be easily inhaled that it poses a genuine threat. If, for instance, your home contains Artex in the ceiling or walls it should not pose a threat unless it is somehow disturbed and reduced to powder. At the same time there are safe, effective methods for removing it should the new buyer wish and they should be made aware of that fact.
- Removing it Beforehand – Some homeowners who lived with asbestos in their home for years decide to remove it before putting their home on the market simply to increase the chances of finding a suitable buyer. While this may indeed make finding a buyer easier you’ll still have to disclose the mitigation work was done and may still encounter some who simply don’t believe there’s any such thing as a safe house that used to contain asbestos. In such cases you can recommend they buy an asbestos sampling kit and test it themselves.
Selling a home that does or has contained asbestos is not impossible. It simply requires you take a real world attitude, stay grounded in the facts and remain patient.