If I buy a house with an underground oil tank would this affect the value of my house whenever I plan to sell

Asked by Buyer, Yorktown, IN Wed Jul 16, 2008

it.I am a buyer in Yorktown Heights area and would like to have some basic knowledge about the hassles attached with an oil tank? Should I get a soil check or trust the inspector if he says everything is fine?

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Christopher…, Agent, Tarrytown, NY
Wed Jul 16, 2008
Hi, I would recommend having a separate test done for the oil tank. There are tests such as pressure tests (which test for leaks) and others that only a certified person should perform. The inspector is good to point out any visible red flags, but definitely take it a step further. Underground tanks can be fine, if you have it tested and there is a leak the seller is responsible by law to remediate the problem. Also most banks will require tank inspection and insurance so it makes sense to do all of this anyway. An oil tank cannot be left underground if abandoned, they need to be removed, that would be something that would haunt you when you go to sell.


Christopher Pagli
Associate Broker
Legends Realty Group
1 vote
Gail Gladsto…, Agent, 11743, NY
Wed Jul 16, 2008
Real Estate in NY is unlike real estate anywhere else. You cannot make the seller change the tank.

If the tank is fairly recent and is of fiberglass (corning), it is fine. If it is an original buried 275 tank, have it certified abandoned (they will drain it and fill it with foam) and install an above ground for about $1300-1500. If it is a large tank, 550 or above, it will probably be around $2,000.

This is not an astronomical price and is well worth it.

To all Sellers who have buried tanks...do yourself a favor and get them abandoned and replaced now!
Web Reference:  http://GailGladstone.com
1 vote
Maria Koppl, Home Buyer, New Jersey
Wed Apr 20, 2011
We purchased a house with a decommisioned oil tank. The seller provided all the documentation and the soil was tested. Everything was fine and we purchased it. We are very happy. If the decomissioning is done following requirements and the soil is clean, the tank is not a problem. Ask for the paperwork and test the soil.
0 votes
Chris, Home Buyer, Johnson, AR
Sat Jul 19, 2008
you should be careful, My house had one and it became an EPA issue when we tried to sell, we had to have it removed before it was approved for sale. if it is an older tank (not sure of the exact date) then insurance will not cover it and it may cost thousands of dollars to remove.
0 votes
Reena Kanner, Agent, Cleveland, OH
Wed Jul 16, 2008
The EPA is very involved in under ground oil tanks, I would suggest staring there. Sold a home recently and was told there was no oil in it and it was "fine". Buyer called EPA, long and short there was a small amount of oil. It has to be pumped out, and tank had to be removed per their standards.
0 votes
Egen Warner…, Agent, New Rochelle, NY
Wed Jul 16, 2008
A few questions:
Is this an active tank?
If its not an active, has it been legally abandoned? (Calll local Fire Department)
I would advise you to get the soiled checked. However the seller might ask you to do this at your own expense. I have closed many transactions with underground tanks smoothly. This is going to be a 50/50 chance on if it will be an issue later on. Some might be leary about buying this property in the future. An educated buyer that is fully informed will also do a soil check in the future and see if you are legally abandoned the oil tank. Keep a detail record for your future buyers to make your future sale an easy one.
0 votes
Betsie Taber, Agent, Lakewood Ranch, FL
Wed Jul 16, 2008
My advice is to have the seller pay for the removal of that tank. This spells nothing but trouble at the time of resale.
0 votes
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