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PMs warned of drug labs in high-end areas

18 December 2012 Stacey Moseley

Investors looking for property in Adelaide’s western suburbs may have been surprised to see one home advertised online come complete with a crop of cannabis.

The property’s photos, which gained the attention of South Australia Police, “inadvertently” revealed cannabis plants growing in pots.

According to a statement from SA Police, police attended the house with a search warrant on Wednesday and subsequently seized the cannabis plants. A 28-year-old man from Henley Beach South has since been reported for cultivating cannabis.

Michael McDonald, the recently appointed CEO at Raine & Horne South Australia, said the incident highlighted the care agents needed to take when taking and publishing photos.

"People need to look deeper at their photos," he told Residential Property Manager.

But this wasn't the first time an incident like this had occurred, he added. In one case he could recall, a photo that was published on an online listing site captured a highly personal 'implement'.

"When you take a photo, make sure you have a good look around," he said.

Amanda Haack, Real Estate Institute of Queensland Journal Deputy Editor recently wrote a blog about the outbreak of drug labs in residential property.

“The setup of drug labs is not always easily identifiable and in many instances landlords may look to blame agents and seek to recover their losses from them,” she wrote.

According to Ms Haack drug labs are appearing in properties across the country in well-to-do areas and not just in abandoned sheds on the outskirts of town as once thought.

“An article titled ‘Landlord blasts property agents after drug raid’ was published in Wednesday’s Gold Coast Bulletin about the discovery of a drug lab property on the Isle of Capri,” Ms Haack wrote.

“This is a prestigious island suburb located in the heart of the Gold Coast with most properties boasting waterfront access. Not exactly an abandoned shed is it? The property in question was a rental property and it once again highlights property managers’ exposure to potential mismanagement claims by their landlord clients.”

To read the full blog click here.

PMs warned of drug labs in high-end areas
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