Things to Consider When Buying a Home
A recent Health Canada survey revealed that 7% of Canadians are living in homes with high radon levels. While all homes have some level of radon, the consideration that needs to be made when considering a purchase is how likely it is that the radon level is high, and how much it will cost to fix.
Radon enters a building through contact with the ground.
Here are a few examples:
If you've fallen in love with your dream home; it's important to know that all homes can have their radon levels reduced. You can move into your home and test for radon during the first heating season that you occupy the house. After a long-term radon test is completed, you will know what the radon level is and whether or not it needs to be reduced.
If you aren't sure you want to purchase a test without some indication of the radon level, CARST has developed a guideline for conducting a Radon Screening Assessment to give you an indication of how likely it is that a home has elevated radon levels.
Understanding a Radon Assessment During a Real Estate Transaction
Here's how an assessment during a real-estate transaction works:
First, contact a C-NRPP Measurement Professional to conduct a Radon Screening Assessment for you.
Closed-house conditions include:
The Radon Screening Assessment will be set up by the C-NRPP Measurement Professional. The detector must be in place for a minimum of 4 days. A longer duration is preferred, but not always practical in a real estate situation.
The C-NRPP Measurement Professional has specific guidelines about where and how to place the test, as well as how to report on the results. This may include using 2 detectors, depending on the type of devices used.
Understanding my Radon Assessment Report
The Radon Assessment Report will provide a result of Green, Yellow or Red to help you understand the likelihood that the annual average radon concentration could be above 200 Bq/m3.
Do I Need to Worry About Newly Built Homes?
Green Test Result
A Green Test Result indicates a radon screening assessment of 75 Bq/m3 or less during the heating season and 50 Bq/m3 or less outside the heating season. It is important to note that a “Green” test does not guarantee that the annual average radon concentration in the dwelling is below 200 Bq/m3. A long-term follow-up radon measurement conducted during the next heating season must still be carried out.
Yellow Test Result
A Yellow Test Result indicates a radon screening assessment of greater than 75 Bq/m3 during the heating season or 50 Bq/m3 outside the heating season, up to and including 400 Bq/m3. This result indicates that there is a higher likelihood that the annual average radon concentration is above 200 Bq/m3.
Red Test Result
A Red Test Result indicates a radon screening assessment of greater than 400 Bq/m3. This result indicates a strong likelihood that the annual average radon concentration is above 200 Bq/m3.
New homes are not radon free. Some new homes feature radon resistant features, but these does not guarantee low levels. Testing is ALWAYS recommended when occupying a new space.
Ontario Homes are covered under the Tarion warranty which provides free mitigation when radon levels are above Canada's guideline within the first 7 years of the home being constructed. Find more information here.