When you write an offer on a house or property you try to think of all the things you want to cover. Our contract have most things mentioned, but not necessarily in the way you need them mentioned.
I had lunch on Tuesday with a couple of real estate agents from Seneca. Perry had just had a closing at Mountain Rest. The house had a basement and a RADON issue. (Now just so you will know, when an agent has an issue it usually means extra work and it is double talk for a problem that could blow the whole deal.)
Our area has a lot of granite, radon gases escape from the granite. Homes with basements have the potential for having radon. Basements act as a collection point or trap for the gas. The cure is somewhat simple...vent the gases outside. This is usually done by drilling a hole or two in the floor and then having vent fans to draw out and circulate the air from the basement area.
The test for radon is done as part of the home inspection. A sample box is put in the basement and left undisturbed for a period of time. The collection box is then shipped off to a lab for the results. Once you have a positive test, do the cure, you will need to do a 2nd sample to make sure the gas has vacated the property and the radon levels are safe again.
Radon has been found to cause cancer. If a house has a basement I strongly advise buyers to have this test as part of the home inspection. A simple precaution and an easy fix if you know you have the problem. Should you not want a house that has radon, your agent needs to make this a contingency in the contract to purchase. There is not an out clause in our standard contracts and if radon makes you uncomfortable this should be included as a contingency. Agents who have experience in this will include it, if your agent doesn't..remind them to.