Buying a New Home? Get a Healthy Home Check
Buying a New Home?
There are so many details to pay attention to when you and your family are looking for a new home. Is the neighborhood safe? Are there good schools? Is the house big enough?
Have you ever thought to ask “Is this home (and neighborhood) going to be a healthy environment for me and my family?”
Will it be a healthy home for my family?
Even when you find the perfect home thorough inspections are required.
Everyone at least gets what is known as the “Termite Report”. Mortgage companies require it prior to approving a loan on a property.
This is a good report and should make the buyer aware of any major, and oftentimes minor structural issues with a home.
However, these reports do not address items that might affect the health of the occupants, mainly you and your family. To ensure your new home is a new healthy home, consider a Healthy Home Check.
Get a Healthy Home Check!
I think a Healthy Home Check should be part of every residential real estate transaction. It is important to know before you buy what you are getting into. Many items are addressable but some might be important enough to seriously consider ending the purchase and looking for a better alternative. A Healthy Home Check can help to ensure you are buying a new healthy home.
What does a Healthy Home Check entail?
A thorough visual inspection for items such as:
Mold and Moisture – Significant interior mold growth can have serious health effects, including asthma and other allergies. Some mold is highly toxic. If there was hidden mold in your home, wouldn’t you want to know about it?
- Mold and Moisture – Significant interior mold growth can have serious health effects, including asthma and other allergies. Some mold is highly toxic. If there was hidden mold in your home, wouldn’t you want to know about it?
- Chemical contaminants – Abandoned fuel tanks, gas and oil leaks, spilled paints, pesticides and other chemicals can all be health hazards in, around, and under a home.
- Gasses – Carbon Dioxide, Carbon Monoxide, Sewer Gasses, Natural gas or propane leaks are all tested for in a Healthy Home Check.
- IAQ – Indoor Air Quality – The home’s ventilation system and filtration effectiveness can be assessed.
- Pathways – Possible hidden pathways that pollutants or other contaminants may use to enter your home.
- EMR/EMF – Electromagnetic Radiation/Electromagnetic Fields – External Sources such as high voltage transmission lines and high powered cellular tower arrays can be identified and measured to determine occupant exposure levels. Interior sources can also be investigated, such as faulty or out dated wiring.
- External Factors – Is this home close to a freeway? Is outdoor air pollution greater or less than an average home.
Environmental Testing & Laboratory Analysis
In addition to the visual inspection and on-site measurements, lab samples can be taken to help determine if the Air, Soil, Water, or surfaces contain contaminants that might affect occupant health.
Commonly we test homes for:
- Mold – Airborne Spores or Dust samples. We can also swab any suspicious areas for mold identification.
- VOC’s and Formaldehyde – We can test the air for volatile chemicals.
- Water – We can test the quality of your source water and also determine if the building plumbing is contaminated. We can use this information to help recommend filtration to provide excellent drinking (and bathing and cooking) water quality.
- Soil – We can test the soil for Heavy metals such as lead and arsenic, as well as pesticides.
- Particulates – If a home is near a freeway or busy thoroughfare, particle counts can help determine if outside air meets US EPA NAAQS (National Ambient Air Quality Standards).
It is best to start with a 1-2 Hour Healthy Home Check Visual Inspection, and if any items are discovered that might be suspicious, then sampling or additional investigation can be recommended.
With families spending so much time in a home. With a home being a place families will live for years, please consider making a Healthy Home Check part of your Pre-Purchase due diligence. Wouldn’t you rather know before you buy?
Who is Healthy Building Science?
Environmental Testing Services at HBS
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