Leeds Township man discovers contamination after purchasing land – Kingston
When Greg Hayes bought a property in Leeds Township, Ontario, he intended to put some time and money into it.
“Well, I figured I’d spend another $100,000 fixing the house,” Hayes said.
What he didn’t expect, however, was to be informed by the Ministry of the Environment that his new land on the site of a former gas station had been contaminated and had to be cleaned up.
He says the costs are far more than he expected rewards
“It will cost us $300,000 to $400,000 to clean up the mess,” Hayes said.
What rights do I have to protect my property in Canada?
He hired a lawyer to help him navigate the situation as he believes the previous owner was aware of the contamination but did not share the information. “Parties interested in the site are responsible for determining the property’s environmental status.”
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However, according to Queen’s University law professor Michael Pratt, there are some exceptions to this rule.
“If the seller misrepresented the environmental condition of the land, it would hold them accountable,” Pratt said.
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Hayes says this simply wasn’t what he had in mind when he bought the land.
“I bought this so that I could retire instead of living the rest of my life in poverty.”
And he hopes that at least other buyers will learn from his situation.
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