Editorials » Home » Real Estate

Underground Fuel Tanks What Buyers Should Know

By: Eric Badgely
In the USA, requirements have, in recent years, become stringent regarding the need for removal of old underground storage tanks. Even a few years ago, people would decommission tanks by draining the fuel (gas or oil) and filling the tank with a concrete slurry. Recently, a government official told me that, today, any tanks discovered must be removed. That does not apply to tanks that were grandfathered in and were legally decommissioned under the old guidelines and the official did cite a possible exception to the current rule. He said that, if removing the tank would damage the home or something of real significance, like a valuable tree or an attached historical structure, then an exception might be allowed. Special permits would be required to exercise this exception to the rule.

As a realtor, periodically, this concern with tanks comes up as many banks won't close on a loan until any known underground storage tank is removed. Why? The issue is not the tank but possible pollution from the contents. If pollution has leached out from the tank, cleanup costs can be very expensive. I know of one such cleanup in my area, where the costs ran in excess of $50,000. That was more than one fourth of what the low end home was worth.

In just about every community there are licensed fuel tank excavation and remediation companies that can come in and locate, and evaluate and remove, any underground tanks. If you are a realtor, listing an older home, you might want to take a look around the house and the lot. Look outside, near the foundation, for any old metal vent pipes or fill tubes. In a basement or crawl space, look for small diameter copper tubing (it may be disconnected and rolled up) that comes through the wall -- usually a foot or so under the level of the soil outside. If you see such materials, you can anticipate and circumvent problems by having a professional locate and deal with any old underground fuel tanks prior to putting the home on the market. If you are suspicious that any such tank might be present, have the situation checked out. The cost, to have someone qualified look for old underground fuel tanks, is minimal. Now, if a tank is found, it costs something to have it removed. But, at the least, you will have resolved an ugly problem that was bound to come up anyway and at a much more inconvenient time.

Share this article :

Users Reading this article are also interested in;
• Underground California, by Cary Ordway
• Capability Of Tanks, by Victor Epand
• Water Tanks, by Dave C
Top Searches on Real Estate
•  Home Based Businesses For Women•  Work From Home Businesses

About The Author, Eric Badgely

This article was produced by the writing team of Eric Badgley & Angee Gardner; specializing in Bellingham Condos and Bellingham Real Estate, along with Bellingham Home Inspectors. Making sure buyers are protected.

Add Streetdirectory.com to your favourites! - Make Streetdirectory.com your homepage
About » Widgets | T&C | Feedback   For Businesses » Free Ads | Online Advertising | Wall Maps | Text Ads
Hotline : Sales 6474 4005 | Marketing & Business Opportunities : 65942755 | (Mon to Fri, 9am to 6pm)
Streetdirectory.com Real Estate Guide is a one stop guide for all your questions relating to real estate. Whether you’re buying a new home, selling your old one or refinancing it, the Real Estate Guide has all the information you need. Read about home loans, insurance, mortgages, dealing with real estate agents and many more. Buying and selling property is a big decision so let our Real Estate Guide help you with those big questions.