I have been blessed with the knowledge and expertise that comes with having represented many Buyer's and Seller's in the purchase/sell of homes over the years. It is my definite opinion, and I certainly recommend to all my clients, that one does a sewer camera inspection when purchasing a home.
Luxury Properties Director
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices CA Properties - Beverly Hills
My advice is that you can NEVER have too many inspections, especially if your gut is telling you to conduct a specific one. As an agent and broker, I will always discuss with my clients all potential inspections a home might require before we even commence the actual house hunt. I also provide rough estimates as to what to expect cost wise. From there, I let the buyer decide which ones they want to add on (in addition to the ones I require ALL my clients to conduct for everyone's protection: general, mold, chimney, termite, and pool if applicable).
A general home inspector typically does not provide a thorough sewer line inspection. To do this, they need to put a camera up the line to evaluate blockages, etc. You are then provided with a disc to watch of the lovely contents within your sewer (it's great to watch over a crackling fire and glass of wine as well as your Chimney Inspection video) as well as a report and recommendations. I sold a house in the hills north of Sunset on lower Kings. I would have naturally thought the line was connected to the city...WRONG. We did a sewer line inspection which revealed it was an a septic tank which needed to be completely pumped (septic was unknown or undisclosed by seller) and that the city had made a line available for connection in the last few years if he wanted to connect down the line (pun intended). That $1500 inspection yielded a $3500 credit in return, a pumped septic paid by seller, and knowledge we didn't know prior.
One final thought about your situation. By doing your complete due diligence, you not only alleviate liability for your agent, her brokerage, and the seller but you are also getting peace of mind. Any agent who is reluctant or "acting annoyed" because you want to pursue this further is suspect in my book. Some agents want to scoot by with as minimal inspections as possible b/c the less problems discovered, the less likely you are to want to back out. Potential deal breaker = loss of commission for agent.
Best of luck to you. When it comes to any big decision in life, always go with your gut and know that we as agents are here to look out for your best interests at all times, regardless of financial return.
All the best,
Denoument: I ended up having root infiltration from a big tree and we have clay pipes (had), the roots broke through the weak 'coupling' pieces and had created a net trapping anything that tried to go past it, making the problem very difficult to fix. We ended up having to have the entire sewer line from our house to the sidewalk tore out and we had them add a clean-out at the same time as well, everything was PVC afterwards. They forgot to use the root treatment and we ended up having water again a month later (the portion after the sidewalk to the main line had another section with roots). Make sure you get the company to put in writing what they did so if they didn't and you end up with water, you have a leg to stand on when it comes to who's paying the bill/deductible. After the second time, they used a super sized cutter to get the remaining roots and root killer. After htat it's a yearly maintenance or shell out the extra $3k to extend it to the main line (probably do that this summer so I never have to worry about it again).
I can see that your agent assumes since this is a newer house that a sewer camera inspection may be a waste of time,
However, never Assume anything ! Have it done, you can even find some plumbers who will an inspection for FREE , and if any repairs needed you can use their services.
It's your Agents job to help you with any possible issues that come up.
Please feel free to contact me at (310) 584-7721 if you have questions. I would be happy to answer any questions.
You are not paranoid or unreasonable to want to know what is going on with a property you are about to purchase.
Mark Leach | http://www.guaranteedrooterservice.com
It cost me 10K to rip up some landscaping in front of the driveway, then the driveway itself, fix the piping and put everything back together.
Please do this inspection!
If you have any more questions or need referrals for inspection, please feel free to call me.
What would happen if you buy this property just to find out that the sewer line has tree roots in it and it will cost your thousands to repair the damage? It is very common that homeowners do not realise that they have a drain problem and this leads to disastrous consequences( the cost of replacing the damaged pipes). We live in EQ zone, pipes do crack.
Go ahead and order a sewer inspection using a sewerline camera whether the home is fairly new or an older home.
by now, you have probably already bought a house.
Whatever the case, I have personally been the technician on the seen to clear a blocked drain, that ended in an excavation to replace a damaged pipe. The people were lucky. They just moved in and had not closed yet.
That situation does not occur very often. So, be very cautious if you are told you can move in before closing. Maybe it was a rent to own, situation.
Anyway, have the sewer inspected as part of the closing.
Very few property owners are aware that they are responsible for the sewer line from the building to the city main. Broken, flat, bellied, offset, or root-infested sewer or septic lines can cause sewage to back up into the house or commercial building leading to extensive property damage in the home or business. Sewer back-ups can cause thousands of dollars in property damage and loss of valuable operating time for businesses. Although insurance companies will usually pay for cleanup and restoration; repair or replacement of the line is typically excluded, which can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Because we do not replace, repair, or service sewer or septic systems; we are truly unbiased in giving forthright information to our clients.
Standard home inspections do not cover the structural integrity or condition of sewer or septic lines. A sewer scope provides an innovative approach to make an educated buying decision, plan for upcoming maintenance, budget for necessary repairs, or gain valuable purchase price negotiation. When a line is video inspected (scoped) it can also be located. Locating a sewer or septic line is also an important step prior to any future excavation, remodeling, concrete, or landscaping projects.
I know this question was asked several years ago. So what ever happened? Did you have the inspection? What was the outcome?
We do these tests all the time in Central Texas for about $100. as long as there is a cleanout .
Master Plumber M-2984
Considering what a sewer line replacement costs, especially if the line is in the middle of the street,
repais can easily go over $10,000. Even with newer sewer lines tree roots can still get in where the 6 inch sewer lines connects to the 4 inch line (because of loose rubber boot)
If there is a leak, then a Camera should be able to locate it.
Get it tested with a static test. You don't want a house that will have foundation problems.
Any home being purchased should have a static test done. This will let you know if there is an issue,
A camera inspection would only be needed if a static test indicated a break in your line.
If you have a static test done and your system has a break.......It is extremly important to get the line repaired.
You will have foundation issues if you don't get it repaired and that could make your home worthless.
Never listen to e Real Estate agent when it comes to not being careful.
Remember the Agent wants the sale to go through, that is how they get paid! Some Real Estate Agents are only in it for the money and do not care what you end up with.
There are many pictures of what you may encounter with this drought in midwest tree roots are destroying sewers. Not to mention during the building boom if 90'sI corners where cut. I have fixed shear breaks where pipe shears next to house and generally sewer line sinks a few inches you may not notice until it washes out. Landscaping in front of house must be taken out, any concrete decks, side walks on top must be taken out and repaired. Ive found the shears to be cheaper to fix than concrete or landscape restoration.
A Sewer Line Inspection can help identify Problems before they become an Expensive Problem!
When your ready to make an offer on a home it's always best to have a plumbing or drain cleaning company run a sewer camera down the line. Itâ€™s an affordable insurance and good safe guard. If you happen to find a clean and good drain pipe, you win.
If you find some tree roots or damaged spots you can have the choice to buy the property or pass. If they want to sell the house, more than likely the seller will agree to get the drain pipe cleaned before the closing on the house. If you find a broken or damaged sewer line you have won. By spending your life savings and hoping that if there is a problem you can find enough money between pay checks to fix the repair is not the way to go.
-Pro Power Rooter
. This will insure there are no breaks seen or unseen by a camera. An Ounce of Prevention is worth a pound of cure. Good luck.
We have only lived in our home for 4 months, we never cook, rarely use the disposal, and yet the rooter guy penetrated the blockage and went beyond the blockage into the street (aprx 50 feet) and the trap showed little sign of moving water down the drain. This happened a week ago.
The drain was pretty much 90% clogged before we closed on the house according to the rooter guy.
I never new that the drains should be inspected before closing on a house. I'll never close on a house again without a drain inspection.
I'll never forget waking up last Friday morning, going into the bathroom in my barefeet, experiencing the cold water surrounding my feet and waking up to a nightmare.
Your Agent should be anoyed at her own ignorance.
Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Loan Officer, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors