Before you put your John Hancock on the dotted line, make sure that you have thoroughly gone through the details of the property you are purchasing. In the case of older homes, you may be buying into a money pit if you are not careful. While most responsible buyers make sure that a home inspection has been done, these inspections do not cover all the areas that need attention. For example, unless you call a Roto-Rooter technician, much of the plumbing will most likely be overlooked. More specifically, the sewer system may be in shambles and on the brink of complete failure. If this is the case for a property that you are serious about buying, these issues may change your mind or at least give you enough ground to counteroffer a lower price. If you still do not understand how important a sewer inspection is, consider the following.
Most Important Reasons for an Inspection of the Sewer
As sewer systems age, they can develop plenty of issues that are difficult to resolve. Much of the sewer line is underground and hard to get to without excavation. One problem in particular that even new systems are not immune to is tree roots. Since roots are attracted to moisture, it is common for them to wrap around pipelines and gradually crack them open. Once the roots are inside, they can collect nutrients from the waste that is sitting there. To eradicate the problem, tree roots need to be killed and removed. If you inherit this problem, expensive excavation and pipeline replacement will be all on you.
On a positive note, looking at an older home and discovering that the sewer system is brand new is an awesome selling point that most people completely overlook. If you are selling a property, this can be a great way to advertise. For homes built in the 1930s and before, having a completely new sewer system already in place will make it easier for buyers to feel more comfortable during a sale.
If, however, you are on the buying end, sewer inspection results can reveal that there are major issues that will cost quite a bit to fix. Many homes built around the turn of the century have sewer lines made out of Orangeburg pipes. These pipes are virtually made out of tarpaper and are probably just barely hanging onto life if they haven't already been replaced.
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