Question:

We are going to a hotel for the entire period of Pesach, leaving home Erev Pesach. What do we have to do about cleaning the house and removing chametz?

Answer:

One who leaves his home within thirty days of Pesach is obligated in bedikas chametz even if he won’t be home for Pesach (Shulchan Aruch 436:1). This bedika should be performed the night before one departs. Rema writes that one does not recite a berachah, whereas Mishnah Berurah (Biur Halachah) mentions a number of authorities who write that a berachah should be made, and leaves the matter as tzarich iyun (requiring additional research). Out of doubt, one would not recite a berachah.

Some arrange for a special sale of chametz, which takes effect on the thirteenth of Nissan rather than the standard sale (which takes effect of the fourteenth). If such a sale is arranged, it would exempt you from bedikas chametz. Yet, rather than losing the mitzvah, it is possible to sell part of the house (meaning the chametz in part of the house), which would exempt those parts from bedikah, and leave the unsold parts for the mitzvah of bedikas chametz.

 

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2 Responses to “Going Away for Pesach (Bedikas Chametz)”

  1. aside from the issues of Bedikah and Mekhira, how strict does the cleaning have to be ?

    • If you are doing bedika, then the cleaning must be good enough to make sure you make it through the bedika. Past this, it’s a matter of spring cleaning…

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