Know your home's past owners

By: Alex Hambrick Email
By: Alex Hambrick Email

A couple of months after moving into her apartment local mother Antonia Salaz discovered the hazardous past of her home.

"My 5 year old had a seizure and the upstairs kids both had seizures my oldest son had asthma and it got worse," said Antonia Salaz Grand Junction resident.

She wasn't sure what was causing the illnesses, but talked to a neighbor and found out the previous owners may have been methamphetamines users.

Local home inspector John Wiederkehr said he's had more requests for meth inspections this year than ever before.

"When I do inspections for buyers, I don't know how to test." He went on to say, "Is concerning because I've heard the residue left behind can be lethal," said Wiederkehr.

Salaz took matters into her own hands and purchased a home test that came back positive for meth particles.

"We contacted the landlord and he let us break the lease," said Salaz.

Heather Benjamin of the Mesa County Sheriff's Department says a buyers best bet is to contact law enforcement and ask for "call to service order." The order will give you information on any criminal activity for the time you specify.

"So people using meth or distributing meth is not uncommon for people booked into our daily register," said Benjamin.

Officials say, meth production and usage is not as prominent today as it was five years ago but it is still a problem. Benjamin said the best way to avoid illnesses caused by a contaminated home is to do neighborhood research and always do a thorough cleaning before moving in.


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