Home Buying in Palmerton>Question Details

Claire, Home Buyer in Pennsylvania

Is the Seller of a home responsible for having Septic pumped out if Home Inspector says it is full and needs?

Asked by Claire, Pennsylvania Fri Jul 31, 2009

to be pumped. Also is Seller responsible to have oil in tank so Home Inspector can inspect heating system? (it is an Estate Sale)

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In the Pennsylvania Standard Agreement of Sale there is a clause in the septic inspection contingency that states "If and as required by the inspection company, Seller, at Sellers expense,will locate, provide access to and empty the individual on lot sewage disoposal system. Seller will also restore the Property, at Sellers expense, priior to settlement." This is standard language in the Agreement of Sale. An Addendem would be required or a clause written into the contract to make any changes.
Bev Kalb
Century 21 Longacre Realty
610-845-6000 x 208
610-442-6897 direct
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 31, 2009
If the home has not been sold yet than I would assume the current home owner would take the responsibilities of it. If the home inspector is saying that you definitely want to make sure that it is cleaned. Hopefully the previous home owners maintained it well and had it cleaned regularly. http://www.acesan.net/ace_sanitation/septic_tank_cleaning.html
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 23, 2015
When my buyer has a Septic Inspection, I have always had the seller pay for pumping the septic as is customary here.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 22, 2014
Although in PA home sales are as-is you should have an inspection performed regarding the oil tank. If the tank is underground the soil and tank should be inspected. If oil is found in the soil the current owner is responsible for the clean-up. If this is an aboveground tank it should also be inspected. The shell of the tank should be inspected using an ultra-sonic exanmination. The area around the tank should also be inspected for signs of oil leaking. Also if there is an aboveground tank many times the aboveground tank was installed because the underground tank had been leaking. In cases where there is an aboveground tank we recommend that the grounds around the house be searched for underground tanks.
As far as the septic system goes, you should also have that inspected. If it is not working properly it could cost $30,00 to replace it. Also if you use an inspection company like mine that is certified if you receive passing results for the septic and the oil tank you can purchase "insurance" on both. The septic insurance is for $25,000 and the premium is about $17/month. The oil tank policy covers $100,000 in clean-up cost is less than $200/year.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Aug 17, 2009
The seller(s) is obligated to provide such things you cited only to the extent that they agreed to in the agreement of sale. For instance, if you elected to waive the inspections, the seller is not obligated to do anything related to those inspections and you are still obligated to abide by what you agreed to in the agreement of sale.

If the seller refuses to fulfill the obligations in the agreement of sale, he may be in default and you may act accordingly.

By the way, in the State of Pennsylvania, ALL real estate is sold "as is". There is no warranty, implied or otherwise, unless the seller agrees to provide one or you obtain one yourself from a home warranty provider.

I hope that helps. I wish you the best of luck.

Joe Sheehan, ABR,SRES
RE/Max Professional Realty, Inc.
Exton, PA
Office: (610) 363-8444
Direct: (610) 363-4095
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 1, 2009
Great inromation, Bev! While I didn't have anything that accurate and definitive, my experience as an inspector has been that the seller has always paid for pumping of the septic tank when needed.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 31, 2009
Hello Claire,
I would recommend speaking with your real estate agent to insure that it is written into the Agreement of Sale.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 31, 2009
Yes, the seller should take care of the Septic tank, Unless he is selling the house "as is"; and if he is selling "as is" he is likely to take a big beating on the price.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 31, 2009
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