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Mich. couple discover new home is former meth house

Fox 17, January 6, 2015

To most people, owning a home is part of the American Dream, but for one Michigan family it’s become a living nightmare.

Heather and Brian Vanorder of Greenville, Michigan, found out the home they recently bought was used to make methamphetamine. Now the home feels more like a prison, one they say is hiding dark secrets within its walls.

The Vanorders believe they were lied to about renovations done to their home, a cover up of chemicals left behind from methamphetamine once cooked and smoked in their home, threatening their financial and physical well being.

Heather has a history of multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis and is fearful the chemicals will hurt her family in the future.

The Vanorders moved into their home a month ago, looking forward to living closer to family. Shortly after they bought the house, a man living in the upstairs unit of their duplex told them some surprising news about the previous owner.

“He was one hundred percent sure they cooked meth in there and that he helped the seller cover it up,” Heather Vanorder said.

That conversation was caught on tape, and the homeowners shared the recording with FOX 17. In it, the former upstairs tenant admits to helping the former owner renovate the kitchen and bedroom to cover up the drug activity.

The family has had two separate tests run in the kitchen and bedroom, both showing levels of methamphetamine much higher that what the EPA allows.

“You see it in the movies, you watch ‘Breaking Bad,’ but you get into a house with it, it’s like, what do I do?” Brian Vanorder said.

“We bought a meth house,” Heather said. “I don’t even have words anymore.”

The Vanorders are now forced to live out of their moving boxes, afraid of contaminating anything coming into contact with the house.

“It’s scary and I don’t want to live in fear or be sick,” said Heather.

There’s no law requiring a seller to disclose former drug activity or other crimes. A short paragraph in the seller’s disclosure agreement asks for information on any “environmental contamination” to the home. It’s a rule easily sidestepped, as the Vanorders believe was the case here.

The previous owner declined to issue a statement.

The Vanorders are in the process of building a fence to keep out meth users familiar with their residence.