Meth Labs in Rental Properties: Increased Use of Tenant Screening May Help

tenantriskverification January 23, 2013 0


The abuse of Methamphetamine has long been the scourge of modern society. The drug is readily available and relatively easy to manufacture. Recent headlines suggest that the epidemic is not abating anytime soon and the use of rental properties for meth labs continues.

A recent article in the FayObserver (The Fayetteville Observer, January 5, 2013) highlights the cost of cleanup when a rental property is involved with the illegal manufacture of methamphetamine.

Certainly the cost of an unrented apartment or single-family home is problematic but when one includes the cost of clean-up for a methamphetamine lab significant cost can lead to bankruptcy or loss of income property.

Properly vetting potential renters can greatly assist in making clean decisions about a candidate’s viability. Typical tenant checks include credit scores, previous evictions, and criminal histories. While it is difficult to make an assessment when a potential renter has no criminal past. However, with recidivism rates remaining high, the chance of discovering a criminal history that could lead to future crime remains strong.

Once a property has been identified as housing a methamphetamine lab there are greater challenges beyond clean-up. The ability to sell or re-rent the property becomes problematic

And the problem of meth labs in rental properties should also be the concern of new tenants, as well. Understanding the history of the property is important, especially if involved with the production of methamphetamine. During the manufacture process the chemicals used in the production of meth as well as the final product can get into carpet, furniture, walls, and curtains.

Drug task force authorities across the country are urging new homeowners to check into the drug history of the previous homeowners or tenants, because the residual effects of drugs within a home – especially the chemical deposits from the manufacturing of methamphetamines – can linger for years and cause major health problems for the home’s new occupants.

The Department of Justice/DEA offers an on-line Clandestine Laboratory Registry at

The incidence of meth labs in private homes is on the upswing.

In 2011, 10,287 meth lab incidents were reported across the nation— up 39 percent from 2008. There were also an estimated 2.5 million meth-contaminated homes in the U.S.

Adam Almeida, CEO and President of strongly encourages property managers and landlords to conduct thorough tenant screening.

This article originally appeared on tenantscreeningusa

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