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Leaving Home & Bedikat Chametz

The Daily Halacha Moment - Leaving Home & Bedikat Chametz 🏡 🕯️


״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)


“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


Question:

What should one do regarding bedikat chametz if one leaves his home before Pesach?


Answer:

If a person leaves his home within thirty days of Pesach, even if he has no intention to return until after Pesach, he must perform bedikat chametz before he leaves. Since this bedikah is not performed on the night of the fourteenth of Nissan, no berachah is recited. [1]


Another option for someone who is leaving before Pesach is to sell his home to a non-Jew, which will absolve him from the requirement to perform bedikat chametz. However, if one will be traveling to a destination where he will not have to perform bedikat chametz, he should search his home before he leaves, even though he will be selling it. [2]


If the owner of the house will be letting someone else use his home when he is gone, the person who will be using the house is required to perform a bedikah, and not the owner. [3]


If one will be leaving his home prior to thirty days before Pesach (i.e. before Purim), one is not obligated to perform a bedikah, but he must still recite a bittul. [4]


In a future Halacha Moment we will bzh discuss if one needs to perform bedikat chametz in a hotel or house which is being rented.


Sources:

[1]. Shulchan Aruch 436:1–2. The Mishnah Berurah §3 and Ohr LeTzion, vol. 3, 7:18 state that if someone will be left in the house, such as one’s children or spouse, then it is better that they perform the bedikah on his behalf on the night of the fourteenth. See also Shevet HaLevi, vol. 9, 118:2 and Yalkut Yosef, Pesach, vol. 1, p. 521.

[2]. Shulchan Aruch §3; Mishnah Berurah §27. Ohr LeTzion, vol. 3, 7:19 says that one should leave one room that he will not be selling and perform a bedikah there. See also Yalkut Yosef, Pesach, vol. 1, p. 526.

[3]. Mishnah Berurah §29.

[4]. Shulchan Aruch 436:1.


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