Radon gas is found in homes all over the U.S. Radon is an invisible and odorless radioactive gas. Elevated levels of radon have been found in homes all across the country. Any home in any state may have a radon problem: new and old homes, well-sealed and drafty homes, and homes with or without basements. Radon gas gets into all types of buildings, including office buildings and schools.
You and your family receive the greatest radiation dose in your home. That's where you spend most time - 70 to 75 percent, more for small children. The average person receives each year more radiation from radon than from all other natural or man-made sources combined. Over the years, the accumulated radiation exposure may exceed the exposure of uranium miners.
How buildings draw radon from the ground
The air pressure inside homes is slightly lower than in the ground (typically 0.7-1.4 psi vacuum), which draws in radon gas from several feet away. Combustion appliances, like furnaces, hot water heaters and fireplaces, as well as exhaust fans and vents reduce the indoor pressure indoor. The warm air inside buildings moves upwards like inside a stack and this "stack effect" reduces the air pressure on lower floors. Strong winds create a vacuum on the downwind side by the Bernoulli effect. When the ground is frozen or soaked by rain, the "bottled up" radon gas in the ground moves to the warm and permeable gravel and disturbed ground around the house.
Radon Reduction Methods
The most popular radon mitigation technology is called "sub-slab depressurization" or "sub-slab suction." The "sub-slab depressurization" technique removes radon-laden air from beneath the foundation and vents it outside the house by installing a fan and inserting a pipe through the foundation into the aggregate below, running it to a point outside the shell of the house. A similar technique, "sub-membrane depressurization," which is effective in buildings with earth-floored crawlspaces or basements, uses a plastic barrier over the soil as a collection cover. Another depressurization technique for preventing radon entry, "blockwall depressurization," uses a fan and duct work to draw suction on the hollow interior cavities of a concrete block wall. By keeping the air pressure within the block wall lower than the air pressure in the basement, the soil gas is removed before it can enter the basement.
After the radon reduction procedure is complete, the home should be retested. Most radon reduction systems include a monitor that will alert the homeowner if the system needs servicing.
As previously stated, radon is found all over the country, in every type of building, and in NJ in some towns or even neighborhoods more than others. I personally have sold homes with the remediation system in place with no significant decrease in the fair market value compared to other homes without the system.
If the home you ae buying has tested high for radon, the remediation company will be able to explain how the system works, how the system monitors the radon levels, and other pertinent details about the system, and radon in general.
It's up to the SELLER to fix the problem, not you.
seller to have a company come in and have a radon reduction system installed, or you ask the seller
for a credit after getting estimates for it for that particular home, to have it done yourself before you move in, and have it retested. Most Buyers will want the Seller to do it, and then have it retested to
And if it is a home that already has the system installed because they found higher levels of radon beforehand, then it just needs to be retested to make sure all is still fine, and it should then not
influence the market value much at all.
Except that the seller will have either have paid for the system before or will before the closing, or have to give the credit at closing for the buyers to have it installed by themselves.
Hope this helps
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago and Northern Illinois Expert
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If then determined that the levels are too high to be safe, then a company needs to come in to determine
what needs to be done to mediate the problem and give a written estimate of the costs involved.
The cost truly depends on the construction and type of home and size, as that will determine how the
mediation will be executed.
In most cases I suggest to my buyers to have the home tested for radon, put it in the purchase contract,
and if and when the levels are high, ask the seller to perform the mediation, before closing and provide you with the proof, company who did it etc. by a certain date.
If the Seller does not want to execute and pay for the mediation, then you get the estimate from a reputable company and ask the Seller to credit you the amount at the closing , so that you can do
the mediation on your own.
Mediation is possible, and once done there should not be a problem anymore. In most cases we are talking about a few thousand dollars depending on the situation.
Good Luck to you
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago, North Shore & Northern Illinois Expert
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Investors alike....And always with a SMILE :)
Covering for @Properties Chicago & suburbs, and with her trusted Partner
Agents US & world wide properties. French, German, some Spanish &more EdithSellsHomes@atproperties.com or EdithSellsHomes@gmail.com
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So, it sounds if you are looking for a negotiation tool, $1500 is about it. Also, as I understand things in the area, South Brunswick and Somerset have a high level of radon gas in general compared to other areas.
Not a bad thing as this is a natural occurrence that just needs remediation.