I scheduled an inspection to include radon testing the other day while a colleague was just walking into my office. She asked me if all of my clients spent money for the radon test. I thought this was a strange question. She looked surprised when I said yes, all of my clients decided on radon testing once I explained it to them.
So she asked me what I told my clients to convince them to test for radon. I explained:
"Mr. and Mrs. Buyer - I strongly urge you to have an independent, professional inspection to include radon testing." Why radon testing? I explain the dangers of prolonged exposure to high radon levels and then I explain why I don't want them to buy someone else's problem. After researching radon and speaking to various home inspectors, I'm convinced that radon levels are constant inside a home. If you don't test for it and buy the home without knowing, what happens when you sell it? If YOUR buyer tests for it and finds high radon levels, you will have to have a mitigation system installed. Why not conduct radon testing and if it's high, have the Seller take care of it? The Seller would be required to disclose their knowledge of radon levels once it os known, so it is highly unlikely that a seller won't have it corrected and proceed with the transaction. Does this make sense to you?" Yes, let's have the radon testing done.
It's really that simple. Even if you aren't worried about the health risks(which I think you should be), why buy someone else's problem?
I would absolutely hate it if one of my clients called me to list the home I sold them, only to find out they had a radon problem. It would make me cringe to hear, "Michele, why didn't you tell us about radon testing?" They could have spent $100, got the test, and avoided having to spend $1,000+ to have a radon mitigation system intalled.
Call me paranoid, but I'm into risk management. I include a clause in my buyer agency agreement where the client acknowledges that I have recommended an independent, professional inspection to include radon testing.
For more information on radon testing - check out the EPA's website.
Michele Webb, RE/MAX Properties, Inc. - Colorado Springs, CO, MicheleWebb@remax.net