Emmanuel Remy agrees.
Last year, the Coldwell Banker King Thompson agent represented the buyer of a house on Highland Street in Victorian Village that was the site of a murder two years ago.
Remy’s client didn’t learn about the murder until a few days before the closing, when one of Remy’s colleagues mentioned it.
The client bought the home, renovated it and placed it on the market this spring, presenting Remy with the question of whether to mention the murder to prospective buyers.
“The strategy I took with it was to let people go through and, if they were interested in it, I said, ‘I have to let you know there was a murder here,’ ” Remy said.
The home generated three offers and sold for more than listing price.
Remy, who is on the board of the Columbus REALTORS trade association, thinks the association should clarify the guidelines.
“There’s a lot of confusion, even in the real-estate industry, about what is required,” he said.
Thomas Mannarino, an HER REALTORS agent, is listing a home in the Clintonville neighborhood that was the scene of a murder a dozen years ago involving a samurai sword.
Mannarino said he couldn’t talk about the home without permission from his client but, in general, thinks disclosure is the best policy.
“It’s always better to look at somebody up front and say, ‘Hey, XYZ happened at this location,’ rather than wait three-quarters through the deal and be contacted by the potential buyer about it,” he said.
Still, he added, a policy of full disclosure can be a “slippery slope.”
“In 100 years, something is going to have happened in every little patch of geography,” he said. “Will we disclose that great-aunt Bessie died of natural causes in the bedroom decades ago?”