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Radon and Buying a Home - What To Know
In addition to the guidelines from the US EPA that we discuss on this page, our recommendations for home buyers are as follows.
If the home you want to buy has already been tested for radon?
If you’re looking at buying a home which has already been tested by the seller, there are some considerations when choosing how to proceed. You may decide that the seller’s test result is good enough, or you may decide to either pay for a new radon test and hire your preferred radon specialist conduct the test – or ask the seller to perform a new test on the home.
If you are reviewing a home seller's previous test, ask the following questions:
- Who performed the test (I.e. was it a certified radon professional)?
- What device(s) were used for the test?
- Where exactly was the test taken in the home (what floor, room and exact location)?
- When was the test conducted (how long ago)?
- What lab performed the analysis for the results of the test (if any)?
- What (if any) home improvements, structural changes, or changes have been made to the property’s HVAC system since the date of the test (which might have affected radon levels).
A few other things to consider:
Pay attention to the exact location of the seller’s radon test – especially if you plan on using the basement or lower level as a living space. The previous test may have been taken on the first floor – and NOT in the lowest livable level of the home (finished or unfinished).
If you want the home tested again, communicate your desire to your realtor or the seller. We recommend using an experienced, certified radon testing professional (like Mid America Radon Testing Inc.).
Oftentimes the cost for a radon test can fall on the homebuyer. If you are paying for the test, you have the peace of mind of selecting a qualified professional for the job – that is working for you.
If the home you want to buy has not been tested yet:
Hire an experienced, certified radon testing professional and have them perform the radon test as soon as possible. Make sure to specify aspects of the test in the real estate contract. Namely:
- Specific time that the test will be performed,
- Exact location where the test will be performed,
- Exact type of test being performed,
- What approved or licensed company will oversee the test,
- Specify who will participate in covering the cost of the test, who will have access to the test results and documentation.
- If the test results show that radon mitigation is needed – specify the exact mitigation measures will be taken (I.e. exact mitigation system specs that will be installed by an experienced, certified radon professional.
- In the event that dangerous levels of radon are present in the home, make sure that a follow-up test will be performed after the mitigation system has been installed.
- Clearly specify who will be paying for the testing, and - if needed - mitigation and re-testing.
As well be sure to test any unfinished areas that you plan to renovate/finish in the near future. Test before AND after your project. Forewarned is forearmed – the average cost of installing a mitigation system before any renovations can be significantly less than doing so after the fact.
Experience counts. We've been testing and remediating radon since 1987. We look forward to helping you ensure that your home and family are free of dangers from radon.
Please call with any questions,
Bill & Robin Slentz
Mid America Radon
Mid America Radon Testing Inc. provides radon testing and mitigation to clients in greater Kansas City and the Midwest since 1987.
Home Office: Kansas City, MO
Hours: Mon-Fri: 8am-5pm.
Author: Robin Slentz (Connect at Google+)
Company Page: Find us on Google+
Highly-Rated, Certified radon testing and mitigation company serving Kansas City and the Midwest since 1987. Call now: 913-469-1997Read Testimonials
See EPA Guidelines for radon tests, testing results and recommended remediation measures, including state radon levels (maps) for Kansas and Missouri and the latest word from top health and environmental organizations about the dangers of radon, including comparative risks of radon exposure for smokers and non-smokers and info on radon and real estate transactions.Read more