It had been a frustrating week.
You finally received a contract on your home that you had listed for sale for six months. Although the price that was offered was significantly less than you had first priced your home, you were excited about finally seeing an end in sight. As part of the selling process in your state, however, residential radon testing was needed. And while many homes in your part of the country often had what was considered unsafe radon levels, the numbers were mitigated by the installation of sump pumps and building homes that had walkout basements. In the grand scheme of things, actually, your home should have passed the test with flying colors.
You and your wife had moved into your new home three months ago, so the house that is for sale has been vacant that entire time. On your weekly visits you have been opening the windows if the weather allows and you have had the thermostat turned down to 50 degrees. In preparation for the residential radon testing, however, you turned the heat back up to 60. You were very frustrated to find out, however, that when the radon testing company came in to start the test they cranked one of the two furnaces up to 70. Not only was this a strain on the one furnace that had been turned up, you did not anticipate that the sudden and significant temperature boost would produce good results for the residential radon testing that was being conducted.
You contacted the radon testing contractor and indicated that you were frustrated in the service and were keeping extensive notes about the whole process. If the residential radon testing failed this time, you would not be paying for the second test. The most recent local radon testing results were not encouraging, but you were fairly confident that your house would have better numbers. When the sump pump installation contractor completed his work on your home a few years back, he indicated that you would likely never need the sump pump to run. He was confident, however, that it would help mitigate any possible radon exposure.
The frustrating week did at least have a happy ending. The radon test had results far below any levels that would cause concern, and, in the end, the residential radon testing service apologized and even discounted the bill they sent you.
Radon Tests Are Required in Many Parts of the Country Before Selling a Home
Radon is colorless, odorless, tasteless noble gas. It occurs naturally as a decaying product of radium, a chemical that is found in the ground in many parts of the U.S. Found to be a cancer causing agent if its levels are too high, radon testing is frequently required before the sale of any home. Statistically, a family whose home has radon levels of 4 pCi/l is exposed to as much as 35 times more radiation as the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would allow if that family was standing next to a radioactive waste site fence. Although the levels often go undetected in many homes, other home owners schedule residential radon testing on a yearly basis to monitor the save living conditions for their family.
Many contractors are able to help mitigate radon levels with even the simple installation of a sump pump in a basement. And the fact that walkout basements are often the locations with lower radon levels speaks to the fact that proper circulation and ventilation can help lower radon levels. For many homeowners it simply does not make any sense to wait to test for levels when they are in the process of selling a home. For these homeowners, in fact, testing for radon levels is far more important when they are living in a home than when they are preparing to move out.
Nearly one in 15 U.S. homes is estimated to have radon levels at or above the EPA required action level. Given that some scientists estimate lung cancer deaths in the U.S. could be reduced by 2% to 4%, a percentage that represents nearly 5,000 deaths, by lowering radon levels in homes exceeding the EPA?s action level, doesn’t it make sense to schedule your home test sooner rather than later?
It had been a frustrating week.