I recently had a seller say we can search for a tank, but if one was found, we were not allowed to test. My buyer accepted that, but there were extenuating circumstances, and we were pretty sure there wasn't a tank. Likely if a tank was found and the seller held firm, the buyer would have revoked her offer.
I would advise any buyer to walk away if a tank was found and the seller would not allow soil sampling.
Contact me directly if you need some names of good oil tank companies for locates, soil samples or decommissioning.
When an offer is written to purchase a home that has or had a heating oil tank, either above or below ground, that is the time to specify in the offer that the buyer intends to conduct soil sample testing using a DEQ approved contractor, during their inspection period.
Recently, DEQ approved contractors have required written approval from the seller before they conduct the testing, since the test results are required to be submitted to the Oregon DEQ if a leak is detected. In Oregon, the seller is responsible for clean-up if there has been a reported leak.
Bottom line, as a buyer you should make it clear to the seller at the time of initial offer that you intend to have soil testing done. The results will either provide peace of mind (clean test) or full knowledge, requiring the seller to clean-up the contaminated area.
There is more to add to this discussion, so you should talk with your realtor who should be able to dicsuss contingency periods, etc with you.
Amerivest Realty http://www.PDXHomePros.com
You can say that you must have the soil tested, or you can say what you expect the soil test to reveal.
Talk to your Buyer's Agent.
Good luck and may God bless