JENNIFER FIVELSDAL offers thoughtful advice in the following post. Jen posted the following which became a FEATURED POST at the ECO-ALL-STARS Group at Active Rain. " Sellers it makes perfect sense to fix your environment problem before listing your home for sale. if you failed to do so. it will cost you," she advises.
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Seller Do you have an environmental issue? fix it before listing your home for sale
I ran into this issue twice in the last 2 months. Sellers listing properties with potential environmental issues.
One of the major concern is a buried oil tank. To properly abandon the tank you need paperwork showing that the work was done correctly. Telling a buyer you filled it with sand, is not good enough. What if there was a leak in the tank and the ground was contaminated? Don't expect a buyer to take on this responsibility, cleanup can be extremely expensive.
What a buyer's agent need to keep in mind is that once the closing occurs the buyer will own the problem. Sellers and seller's agents you too are obligated to disclosure any issues you might be aware of.
It is also important to look at the history of the property. If it was a farm at one time did the owner maintain his own gas pump? A very common practice in some rural communities. Sometimes it is very obvious because there is a remnant of a pump. A mixed use property should also have you asking questions too. I have seen cases where the homeowner lived on the property but the property was also a place of business, you need to know what type of business. Yes the history of a property can raise some red flags.
It might be a good idea for homeowners with buried tanks to review the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) Homeowner's Guide for underground heating oil tank
By the way in both cases my buyers walked, it was just too risky. With that being said, if you have a buried tank that is not leaking that is an easy fix.
Sellers it makes perfect sense to fix your environment problem before listing your home for sale. if you failed to do so. it will cost you.
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