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Eric and Sade-Lea Tekoniemi stand in their home, where a gruesome double murder took place in 1996. They are suing the real estate firm,

agent and former owners.

Eric and Sade-Lea Tekoniemi thought they had bought their dream home in Bowmanville last fall.

But it turned into a house of nightmares after they learned it had been the scene of a horrific double murder 15 years earlier.

That discovery has now led to a lawsuit against the real estate firm, an agent and the house?s former owners for allegedly failing to reveal the home?s history.

?I suffered panic attacks and am still on anxiety medication,? Sade-Lea Tekoniemi said Monday of her response to living in the house.

Eric Tekoniemi noted he also felt stress at work and less companionship at home. The uncertainty about his wife?s health and the frequent trips to the emergency room were hard on him, too.

Although the couple said they wanted to cancel the $253,000 sale as soon as they learned of the house?s history, their lawyer said it was too late because they were legally bound under terms of the deal.

But the Tekoniemis decided to sue those involved in the sale of the split-level, partial-brick house, with a claim filed in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.

Ron England, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, murdered his mother, Marian Johnston, 74, and stepdaughter, Jenny, 6, in the home on April 2, 1996. He stabbed his mother 34 times and the child 89 times. The little girl was left lying on the floor with a knife embedded in her heart.

The Tekoniemis are seeking $450,000 in damages plus costs, from Re/Max First Realty, agent Mary Roy, and former owners Arthur Hewer and Sharron Lindsay, who had themselves purchased the home several years earlier.

The claims made in the lawsuit have not been proven in court.

Ron Gordon, the broker-owner of Re/Max First Realty, would not talk about the case, saying, ?I don?t discuss company business with people outside the company.?

Hewer and Lindsay said their lawyer advised them not to speak about it because the case is before the courts. Roy could not be reached for comment.

The couple filed the claim last week. The defendants have not yet submitted statements of defence.

The Real Estate Council of Ontario, which regulates the industry, issued a warning to Roy last month on the grounds that she ?deliberately withheld a material fact known to her? regarding the murders from the buyers, contrary to the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act. The decision followed a complaint by the Tekoniemis earlier this year.

The council cited several provisions in the act?s code of conduct, including not engaging ?in any act or omission that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded as disgraceful, dishonorable, unprofessional or unbecoming a registrant.?

Lawyers say the case involves a grey area in common law on the issue of ?duty to disclose? ? and how to assess what information that entails.

If the claim proceeds to trial, it could become a test case for the doctrine of ?caveat emptor,? or buyer beware, and whether the couple?s situation is an exception to that general rule.

In their statement of claim, the couple described the murder information as a ?material defect...which stigmatized, psychologically impacted and tainted the property.?

The claim said Sade-Lea Tekoniemi had suffered severe depression, and sleep and mood disorders because of the murder revelation and living in the house.

She has experienced heart palpitations, shortness of breath, faintness, nervousness when sharp knives are not out of sight when not in use, and visualizing ?extremely graphic and horrifying images during unguarded moments? related to the murders, the claim added.

As a result of continuing health problems, the couple say they want to sell the home but recover any depreciation in value from the defendants because they want proper disclosure made to any future owners.

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article/1290199--couple-sues-realtor-over-sale-of-house-where-double-murder-occurred

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I'm not sure who's crazier, the guy who killed his mother, or these people.

Fun fact, if you live in an old house, there's a really good chance someone died in it.

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Canadian Horror story anyone? :p

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Panic attacks? Because of something that happened 15 years ago, completely unrelated?

Some people are so ridiculous...

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I'm not sure who's crazier, the guy who killed his mother, or these people.

Fun fact, if you live in an old house, there's a really good chance someone died in it.

the amounts they are suing for and some of the reasons may be frivolous but there is a requirement to disclose issues like this as stated in the article quoting the regulating council, so there is merit in that. Things like a grow house, murders or anything that affects the value of the property must be disclosed. so yes, call them crazy, idiots etc... for being scared but there is still some merit.

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My old house was build on an old slaughterhouse. Some say at night you could hear the faint sound of chickens clucking.

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the amounts they are suing for and some of the reasons may be frivolous but there is a requirement to disclose issues like this as stated in the article quoting the regulating council, so there is merit in that. Things like a grow house, murders or anything that affects the value of the property must be disclosed. so yes, call them crazy, idiots etc... for being scared but there is still some merit.

Grow house, sure, it's illegal. Murder? Suicide? Hard to say that really affects the value of the house any more than, say, the street number. Some Chinese people avoid places with "4" in them the way Westerners avoid places with "13" in them. If you didn't know that before buying, could you then sue, claiming it lowered the value of the house?

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What would happen if the place used to be a den of iniquity with wild sex parties and living in the house turned you into a sexed crazed fornicator? Could you also sue? :rolleyes:

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Grow house, sure, it's illegal. Murder? Suicide? Hard to say that really affects the value of the house any more than, say, the street number. Some Chinese people avoid places with "4" in them the way Westerners avoid places with "13" in them. If you didn't know that before buying, could you then sue, claiming it lowered the value of the house?

Sounds like it may be differences in culture. I'm assuming you're not Asian because it's pretty much a deal breaker if any murder ever occurred in the house. The difference with the superstitions you bring up is that they are information easily verified by the potential buyer and is also his/her responsibility. Murder is not something a potential buyer can readily find out or think to ask. It might not faze you to live in a home where murder occurred, not just natural death (even some would object to that), but that doesn't mean it can't faze someone else. Murder is not a trivial matter.

With that said, I believe real estate agents are only legally required to disclose murders/deaths within a certain amount of years. It's already borderline unethical business to hide information about murder past a certain point in order to get a sale. Make it a gruesome murder like the one here and it's pretty damn terrifying imagery the residents have to live with.

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Grow house, sure, it's illegal. Murder? Suicide? Hard to say that really affects the value of the house any more than, say, the street number. Some Chinese people avoid places with "4" in them the way Westerners avoid places with "13" in them. If you didn't know that before buying, could you then sue, claiming it lowered the value of the house?

well the council that regulates the real estate industry for where this transaction was made is quoted in the article saying the agent had a duty to disclose but failed to do so. googling around shows that in canada, only in quebec there is a law for murder disclosure, in the other provinces its a grey area ethical issue. some states in the US it is also required by law and in others, another grey area ethics issue. if it eventually goes to canadas top court, the matter will set a precedent.

the real estate agent may not have done anything illegal, yet, but will probably lose his licence to sell in that province.

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Free ghosts -- what's the problem ... ? :p

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I think they bought the house and realize it's not what they wanted, so now they make up some silly story to get some of their money back.

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I'm kind of torn on this one. I don't really want to support them, however I can see how that could mess with your mind after you learn a fact like that so it's kind of hard not to.

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what about the murders on the ground the house was built? don't know the likelihoods of it, but on the same ground where any house is built, as some point in time, someone could have died, been murdered, been buried etc....

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Bottom line here is all info should be disclosed to the buyer and in this case it wasn't regardless if it was a double murder or a flooded bathroom from the crapper stopping up.

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what about the murders on the ground the house was built? don't know the likelihoods of it, but on the same ground where any house is built, as some point in time, someone could have died, been murdered, been buried etc....

thats not the issue here.

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isn't there a full disclosure clause or something when selling a house?

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isn't there a full disclosure clause or something when selling a house?

for material facts. like building damage, electrical issues, liens etc... murder, suicides, deaths are in a grey area.

'material facts are defined to be those that would affect a reasonable person's decision to buy or sell'

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