Home Buying in 01862>Question Details

Jen Vose, Home Buyer in Billerica, MA

Are there any dangers to buying a home within 1 mile of a closed land fill? It has town water, not a well.

Asked by Jen Vose, Billerica, MA Wed Nov 6, 2013

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9
Call the County / States Depart of Environmental Quality and ask them if there are state conducted studies on the landfill.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 6, 2013
Any place you choose could be near something of concern. You could consult with an environmental engineer, look at the topography of the area with a geologist and see what might potentially migrate through the neighborhood. Research what types of materials went into the landfill with the state and federal authorities. Do site testing of the soil. There is alot that can be done to assist you in making an informed decision. At the end of the day though only you can decide what is acceptable to you. Also the same way you have concerns, future buyers may also have the same, thus affecting your future resale. A good buyers agent can assist you with identifying and setting up the correct professionals to work with to get their expert results and opinions.

Hope this helps
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 6, 2013
Landfills are required to be lined underneath and capped on top.

There are landfills all over the place. Only you can decide.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 6, 2013
There may be.
I would want to know what it is filled with, regardless of the current condition.
Most fills have records and info in the town where that are located.

I would contact a local real estate professional to help with this answer and to save time and money.
(I'm on the Cape, but I can help you choose a local pro if you want help doing so.)


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0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 12, 2013
Increases in risk of adverse health effects (low birth weight, birth defects, certain types of cancers) have been reported near individual landfill sites and in some multisite studies, and although biases and confounding factors cannot be excluded as explanations for these findings, they may indicate real risks associated with residence near certain landfill sites. A general weakness in the reviewed studies is the lack of direct exposure measurement. An increased prevalence of self-reported health symptoms such as fatigue, sleepiness, and headaches among residents near waste sites has consistently been reported in more than 10 of the reviewed papers. It is difficult to conclude whether these symptoms are an effect of direct toxicologic action of chemicals present in waste sites, an effect of stress and fears related to the waste site, or an effect of reporting bias. Although a substantial number of studies have been conducted, risks to health from landfill sites are hard to quantify. There is insufficient exposure information and effects of low-level environmental exposure in the general population are by their nature difficult to establish. More interdisciplinary research can improve levels of knowledge on risks to human health of waste disposal in landfill sites. Research needs include epidemiologic and toxicologic studies on individual chemicals and chemical mixtures, well-designed single- and multisite landfill studies, development of biomarkers, and research on risk perception and sociologic determinants of ill health
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 7, 2013
Another good point, even though you said town water, where does the town source the water.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 7, 2013
Check with the local board of health.

Also are you up gradiant or down? Is your water well or town?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 7, 2013
The two issues that I see and there may be more, is you need to investigate is out gassing.... toxins in the air and ground water contamination.

I am certainly no expert but 1 mile is pretty far. If the landfill is owned by the town, I am sure there are some sort of yearly monitoring reports that are available either by the town or state. At the very least have the water tested during your home inspection period.

I found this article: http://www.sixwise.com/newsletters/06/09/29/how-dangerous-is…

Nothing is definitive in this article and does bring up the same points that I do which is toxins in the air and ground water contamination.
Web Reference: http://www.thehousewiz.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 6, 2013
depends how long it has been closed because rats have no place to eat any more and will stray
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 6, 2013
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