Where is Chris Watts's murder house located? Property still vacant after failed auctions as 'nobody wants it'
The auction of the house was first announced in early 2019 but got pushed back, and now its been around two years since the house is vacant
The nation was horrified when Chris Watts butchered his family in Frederick, Colorado on August 13, 2018. The case is about to achieve new notoriety thanks to a new Netflix documentary, 'American Murder: The Family Next Door.' The home where Chris Watts killed his wife Shanann Watts remains vacant, as now, no one wants to buy the house.
The auction of the house was first announced in early 2019, but the dates got pushed and in March 2020, the auction was postponed for the third time. The documentary details how Watts strangled his pregnant wife, Shanann Watts, in their five-bedroom home during a fight in the early hours of August 13, 2018. Chris told her he was having an affair with a co-worker, Nicole Kessinger, and asked for a divorce. Shanann reportedly shot back that "he'd never see his daughters again." So he killed her, and later, their two daughters.
According to a Realtor.com report, the house is located at, 2825 Saratoga Trail, Frederick, Colorado, and it was built in 2013. The couple purchased the brand-new home for $399,954 in May 2013. It's now estimated to be worth $648,100, as per Realtor.com.
After many failed auctions, in which no one wanted to buy the Watts home, it was taken out of foreclosure. This means, legally, Chris is still the owner of the family home. "It's not getting any bids because people know the sordid history of the house, and nobody wants it," says Denver-based bankruptcy attorney Clark Dray, who works with foreclosures.
"The longer the house sits vacant, the bigger the discounts and it's been vacant over two years," real estate appraiser Orell Anderson, of Strategic Property Analytics, told Realtor.com. "When there are kids involved, the discounts are higher. People really don’t like that," says Anderson, who specializes in real estate damages, which include properties where crimes occurred. The Netflix documentary will likely worsen the stigma, making the house even more toxic. Anderson expects the house will need to be discounted by 15% to 25% to sell.
For the Watts house to be auctioned off, one of the creditors of the property would have to put it for foreclosure or the state could do it if the delinquent taxes pile up. Creditors are those who have claims on the property for unpaid bills. For this house, the creditors are Shanann's parents, Sandra and Franklin Rzucek, who won a $6 million wrongful death lawsuit against Chris, according to the property's title report. There is also the mortgage lender, water company, and local homeowners association.
As per The Denver Post, Public Trustee Susie Velasquez had said last year she doesn't know why the auction date has been pushed and emphasized that the decision is up to the law firm, McCarthy & Holthus, LLP, which represents the lender JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. When asked about the reason for the delay, David Owen, chief administrative officer for Mcarthy & Holthus LLP, said the company was "not at liberty to discuss pending litigation." JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. did not respond to the publication's requests for comment.