Wednesday, November 26, 2014 12:24pm
North Adams, MA now: 32 °   
Send news, tips, press releases and questions to info@iBerkshires.com
The Berkshires online guide to events, news and Berkshire County community information.
SIGN IN | REGISTER NOW   

Home About Archives RSS Feed
Real Estate Inspections
By Paul Harsch On: 03:25PM / Wednesday March 05, 2014
Important
5
Interesting
8
Funny
0
Awesome
1
Infuriating
0
Ridiculous
0

Today it is routine to have various inspections performed when purchasing real estate. In Massachusetts, one inspection is mandatory and others may be a requirement to obtaining a mortgage. The types and extent of inspections vary with the type of real estate such as land, home, commercial property and the specific circumstances.

We'll focus primarily on a single family residential transaction and just touch on a few other types. These are typical but other inspections may be advised and they are not listed in any order suggesting priority.

Structural or whole house: these are performed by someone licensed by the state (no license required as of yet in Vermont) who will check all visible aspects of the structure, the systems (electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilation), both inside and outside, the foundation, drainage, insulation, in short, everything to do with the house other than cosmetic. Some inspectors will also inspect the appliances, water softeners, filters, AC and other components.

Water: If the property is served by a private source such as a well then it is advised a water test be taken to check for bacteria, contaminants and even the ph of the water.

Radon: This is available by the home inspector or by purchasing a simple kit to do it yourself for air testing however testing for radon in the water is also available if on a well.

Septic System: In Mass., this is referred to as a Title V inspection and must be conducted by a person with the approved state licensing credentials. This particular inspection and certification is required under state law whereas the above three areas of testing are not mandatory though highly recommended.

Percolation Testing: this testing is done when purchasing vacant land to determine the suitability of the site for a septic system. All states in our region require this to be performed in order to obtain a building permit.

Soil testing: in any case where contamination from a hazardous spill or leak is suspected then soil evaluations are done to determine the level of contamination, the type of contaminants and the necessary remediation procedure. It is routine to perform initial site history review on any commercial real estate but buyers should be cautious to consider the fuel type history of other properties such as agricultural or even homes to determine if there may have been spills or buried fuel tanks.

Asbestos: Asbestos may be present in a variety of building materials and as such if demolition or remodeling is under consideration testing should be conducted to determine if there is asbestos containing material present from shingles, to flooring to popcorn type paints and insulation and the process of removal.

Lead Paint: this is of particular concern in residential dwellings and it is illegal to have children under the age of six occupying full time a dwelling where this is known to be present. A licensed lead inspector is required to perform lead tests although there are very inexpensive self-test kits available at hardware stores. Keep in mind that even if you do the self-testing, if lead paint is discovered under the law de-leading would be mandatory if young children occupy the house or apartment, owned or rented.

UFFI: Ureaformaldehyde foam was a very popular form of insulation in the 1970s and very effective as an insulator but often the installations gave off excessive formaldehyde fumes which were a troublesome health hazard and thus the foam was banned. There are new foams on the market today that are highly effective insulation materials and non-hazardous. Existing older foams no longer pose a health risk from fumes but information should be obtained about any concerns there may be such as toxic fumes that can be given off when burned.

Paul Harsch, president and founder of Harsch Associates, a Berkshire County based real estate brokerage firm, is a licensed real estate broker in Massachusetts, New York and Vermont, serving a diverse residential, business, commercial and land client base for 40 years.



0 Comments
     
News Headlines
Williamstown Chamber Executive Director Departing
Selectmen May Seek Peer Review of Dollar General Traffic Study
Oh Be Thankful Pie Auction Raises Funds for Charities
Pittsfield Council Accepts School Budget Law, Denies Hiring Authority Plan
Holiday Hours: Thanksgiving
Holiday Raffle to Benefit Berkshire County Arc, NAMI Berkshire County
Watch What You Eat to Avoid ER This Thanksgiving
'Breakfast With Santa' Set for Dec. 7
Williams PTO holding BJ's Fundraiser
MLK Jr. Day Committee Seeks Nominations for 2015 Peacemaker Award

Paul Harsch, president and founder of Harsch Associates, a Berkshire County based real estate brokerage firm, is a licensed real estate broker in Massachusetts, New York and Vermont, serving a diverse residential, business, commercial and land client base for 40 years. He has achieved personal career sales exceeding $131 million and company sales from 1979 will top $500 million in 2014. Harsch is a member of the Berkshire, Massachusetts, Southwestern Vermont and National associations of realtors, is a licensed Massachusetts real estate instructor and earned the CRB, CRS, GRI and CBI designations. Harsch is a 1969 graduate of Williams College.

To submit comments, questions or requests for future blog topics write him at paul@harschrealestate.com.



Categories:
Adams Real Estate (0)
Adams Real Estate (0)
buying (9)
buying a home in the berkshires (1)
home buyer (0)
home buyer (0)
home buyer (0)
home owner (5)
homes for sale in the berkshires (0)
Lenox Real Estate (0)
Monterey Real Estate (0)
Monterey Real Estate (0)
Otis Real Estate (0)
Pittsfield Real Estate (0)
real estate (10)
second home (1)
selling (9)
Stockbridge real estate (0)
The Berkshires (0)
williamstown real estate (0)
Archives:
August 2014 (2)
July 2014 (3)
June 2014 (1)
May 2014 (2)
April 2014 (3)
March 2014 (3)
February 2014 (3)
Tags:
Real Estate For Sale Williamstown Million-dollar Sales Legal Opinions Home & Garden Engineering Home For Sale In The Berkshires Investment Building Inspector Berkshires Properties Narh Berkshire County Real Estate Attorney Interest Rates Home Inspection Trends Medical
Popular Entries:
High End Sales, Williamstown and Berkshire County
Facilitator, Transaction Broker Agent or Unrepresented?
What If: Engineer a New Use for North Adams Hospital
Investors Taking Advantage of the Real Estate Market
Real Estate Inspections
The Best Small Town in America
Real Estate Perspective 2013-2014
The Froth Is Off
What Do Buyers Want?
Real Estate and Attorneys
Recent Entries:
Come Home to the Berkshires | Berkshire County, Mass.
For Sale By Owner: Homes for sale in the Berkshires
The Best Small Town in America
The Froth Is Off
Do You Want to List Your property or Sell it?
The Home-Buying Process in 12 Easy (?) Steps
Selling or Buying Real Estate Is Just Like Buying a Loaf of Bread
Who Will Be Showing Your House or Property?
Who's Your Real Estate Agent?
What If: Engineer a New Use for North Adams Hospital


View All
Abbott School Pie Auction...
Gabriel Abbott Memorial School's annual Oh Be Thankful Pie...
Wahconah Football Reaches...
Salvatore grabbed the ball out of the air and sprinted 95...
Proud Pittsfield Fights to...
Pittsfield’s run in the postseason came to end on Westfield...
McCann Football's Run Ends in...
The McCann Tech Hornets road to Gillette Stadium and a...
Berkshire Chamber Showcase...
The Berkshire Chamber of Commerce held its Business 2...
Berkshire Grown Holiday...
Berkshire Grown held its Holiday Market in Williamstown on...
Wizards at Hoosac Valley
The Harlem Wizards faced off against Hoosac Valley staff...
St. Mary's Church Tour in...
Residents, business people, elected officials and Friends...
Williamstown's Mather House...
Traffic came to halt for several hours Wednesday morning as...
Girls Soccer: Nipmuc vs...
Although the Wahconah girls' season ended on Tuesday, its...
Boys Soccer: Belchertown vs...
Belchertown Downs Mount Greylock Boys in PKs
Football: Pittsfield vs...
Shade himself ended up taking it in from the 1 on third and...
Football: Turners Falls vs...
After completing the first-ever undefeated regular season...
Festival of Trees 2014
The Berkshire Museum kicked off its Festival of Trees...
Farmers' & Artisans' Harvest...
organic and handcrafted goods were sold at the special...
Football: Agawam vs Wahconah
The Wahconah football team was down eight points heading...
Abbott School Pie Auction...
Gabriel Abbott Memorial School's annual Oh Be Thankful Pie...
Wahconah Football Reaches...
Salvatore grabbed the ball out of the air and sprinted 95...
Proud Pittsfield Fights to...
Pittsfield’s run in the postseason came to end on Westfield...
McCann Football's Run Ends in...
The McCann Tech Hornets road to Gillette Stadium and a...
Berkshire Chamber Showcase...
The Berkshire Chamber of Commerce held its Business 2...
| Home | A & E | Business | Community News | Dining | Real Estate | Schools | Sports & Outdoors | Berkshires Weather | Weddings
Advertise | Recommend This Page | Help Contact Us | Privacy Policy| User Agreement
iBerkshires.com is owned and operated by: Boxcar Media 102 Main Street, North Adams, MA 01247 -- T. 413-663-3384 F.413-664-4251
© 2000 Boxcar Media LLC - All rights reserved