What if the house has a cesspool and there is not enough room on the lot to put in a septic system?

Asked by Brandon, Allamuchy, NJ Mon Sep 9, 2013

I am looking at a house that is great in all aspects other than the septic system, or rather the lack there of. I understand the recent law changes are supposed to move people towards newer and more expensive waste treatment systems. I do not understand how it affects a situation like this.

A small 2 bedroom house is being remodeled on the inside and out and put up for sale before the remodeling is completed. The new plumbing is not yet connected to the cesspool. House then goes up for sale.

The law says you must replace the cesspool with a conventional septic system at the time of property transfer, with limited exceptions.

The lot with the house is only 50x90. There is no room for a standard septic system?

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Wayne Odenbr…, Agent, Mountain Lakes, NJ
Wed Sep 11, 2013

You are right. The Cess Pool has to go!
It will need to be replaced by the current owners, not the Buyers.
There are a variety of new systems on the market to accommodate such problems.
Some are extremely "environmentally sensitive".

You need to get in touch with a company that installs new systems for advice.
(I can recommend a few if you would like.)

You also have to worry about the Well, if you have one.
The present standard is 100 feet from the Septic System.
Your lot is small, so you probably have a problem there as tool.

Exceptions are routine, however. Talk to the town Health Department for guidance.

If you need further advise, let me know
1 vote
Christopher…, Agent, Hackettstown, NJ
Tue Sep 10, 2013
Brandon...I know a great septic engineer in the area that would probably be happy to look at the property and give you a few ideas. Her name is Erica Busch and her number is 908 202 4477. Good luck!!
1 vote
Thanks for the contact info, she was recommended by our realtor as well.
Flag Wed Sep 11, 2013
Christopher…, Agent, Hackettstown, NJ
Mon Sep 9, 2013
In 2012 N.J.A.C. 7:9A was changed to mandate cesspools being upgraded to septics at transfer of title. If the property does not allow for a stanfard field to be installed (possibly such as the lot you described) the local authority (Warren County Health Department) can allow for a sub-standard system to be installed. There are peat moss systems, tanks leading to absorbtion pits, or other interesting scenario's that can be looked into in your case.
1 vote
whiskeyjenki…, , Silver Spring, MD
Thu May 29, 2014
Sounds like this could be an issue. I'm sure the city would be willing to work with you on that. Seems kind of odd that it would be up for sale though...

Will Jenkins | http://www.islandercesspoolny.com
0 votes
, ,
Sat Sep 14, 2013
Negotiate the cost of replacing the system and get a renovation loan to do it yourself if the seller is not willing to do the work prior to closing.
0 votes
Brandon, Home Buyer, Allamuchy, NJ
Mon Sep 9, 2013
Hi John, thanks for your reply.

I've come across the peat moss systems but haven't heard much about the other scenarios you mention.

I did read that before the law change you were allowed to put a septic tank infront of the cesspool but I don't think that's allowed anymore. Would it ever be allowed for the cesspool to function as the "substandard system" or must it be replaced with something? What other options are there?
0 votes
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