Technology has made business easier for everyone, even heroin dealers. They sell the deadly drug with mobile phones and car-to-car transactions. The deals can take place in mall parking lots, at gas stations and in suburbs.

  • Much like real estate agents and Uber car drivers, drug dealers can work anywhere, and there is always business somewhere.
  • There is a heroin epidemic in the Chicago area and in other places all over the country. The drug is coming from Mexico and has made its way into the middle-class suburbs.
  • It doesn't matter how much money you make or how nice your house is. It isn't possible to make the problem go away by purchasing the right real estate or by living in the best school district. Heroin isn't just a big city problem.

Where we live is vital. My clients often ask about crime rates. They want to live in safe neighborhoods, and if they have children or plan to have children, they want to live in the neighborhood with the best school districts.

My nephew David lived in an affluent suburb of Chicago that was chosen by his parents because of the excellent school district and low crime rates. He was a Cub Scout and a Boy Scout, and my brother was a Scout leader.

But technology has made business easier for everyone, even heroin dealers. They sell the deadly drug with mobile phones and car-to-car transactions. The deals can take place in mall parking lots, at gas stations and in suburbs.

Dealers will come to you; it’s what’s known as the pizza-delivery business model. Much like real estate agents and Uber car drivers, they can work anywhere, and there is always business somewhere.

Chicago at dusk image via Shutterstock.

Chicago at dusk image via Shutterstock.

My nephew had play dates and lessons and played on teams. His parents closely supervised his education and were very involved in his life.

David died of a heroin overdose on Oct. 3 of this year. I won’t even attempt to describe the kind of grief our family is experiencing. He would have been 21 next month.

When someone says “heroin,” I think 1970s street drug, and I kind of tune out.

But there is a heroin epidemic in the Chicago area and in other places all over the country. The drug is coming from Mexico and has made its way into the middle-class suburbs. Sometimes it is laced with fentanyl and other deadly poisons.

The day my nephew died, there was an article in the local paper where he lived about 74 heroin deaths in the area already this year. My nephew is number 75 or maybe 76 and is now a statistic, a number added to the horrific death toll.

As one police officer told us, the high is unimaginably wonderful, which makes the drug instantly addictive, and it can be purchased for as little as $5. The police carry Narcan with them in hopes that they can help someone who has overdosed.

I could hear the frustration in the officers’ voices as they sat at my brother and sister-in-law’s kitchen table and asked questions.

Of course, it’s more comfortable to believe that this could never happen to your child. But even if you believe that it could happen, you might not be able to stop it.

My nephew was a drug addict. His drug use landed him in jail, and he went into treatment, and ultimately, it cost him his life. If he were here today, he would do it all again. It’s a disease.

The family wants everyone to know that he died of a heroin overdose and that heroin is easy to find and to buy. It is being manufactured in Mexico and sold wherever you are. It might be pure, or it might be laced with other deadly poisons. At some point, it will touch your life.

My nephew’s death is having a ripple effect on a family and a community. It doesn’t matter how much money you make or how nice your house is. It isn’t possible to make the problem go away by purchasing the right real estate or by living in the best school district.

Heroin isn’t just a big-city problem. Smaller Midwestern towns like Dayton, Ohio, are experiencing this epidemic, too.

We need to stop the heroin from coming into the country and we need to educate parents and children. Read “How heroin flows over the border and into suburbia.”

The drug business has changed to keep up with the times. There is no physical location like a crack house or drug runners or someone on the street corner selling drugs. There is no neighborhood for police to focus on.

Drug dealers use the same technology that real estate agents use. The pizza delivery business model of selling drugs is solid, profitable and hard to stop.

Thanks for reading this far. Now I am going to ask you to do three things:

  1. Use the Internet and do some research on your neighborhood or town and heroin.
  2. Invite someone from your local police department come and speak to your real estate office about heroin.
  3. If there is even a remote possibility that you or anyone in your family suffers from depression, please seek professional help today.

Thank you.

Teresa Boardman is a Realtor and broker/owner of Boardman Realty in St. Paul, Minnesota. She is also the founder of StPaulRealEstateBlog.com.

Email Teresa Boardman.

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