Radon Testing at the time of a Real Estate Transaction
First a quick primer:
Radioactive Radon, a gas, comes from the decay of Uranium, a rock, and is a natural occuring phenomenon present in most all soils. This gas usually dissipates harmlessly into air.
This gas, however, can sometimes concentrate in Minnesota basements.
These high concentrations can be breathed in and contribute to the development of lung cancer.
The EPA has set a threshold level, above which the Radon gas needs to be pumped out of the house or "mitigated".
This mitigation process can cost between $1,500 to $2,500 to install. Once installed it will work tirelessly and quietly to rid your home of this gas. Typically these systems run from the basement thru the roof with an in-line fan attached in the attic. Running the system on the exterior of the home is also an option, albeit perhaps not aesthetically pleasing.
Radon testing is done with finely calibrated machines, and record air samples every hour for 48 hours. Differing basement types i.e. Full basement, crawlspaces, and slab-on-grade, are each required to be tested. The highest of these results will be your mitigation deciding factor. The results are measured in pCi/L (pico curies per liter of air). Above 4.0 pCi/L the home should be mitigated. Due to time constraints this is the only testing standard accepted by the real estate industry.
This particular period in the real estate transaction is the only time you will have leverage with the seller to negotiate the cost of mitigation.
PLEASE NOTE: as of Jan 1, 2019 the state has assumed oversite of all Radon Measurement and Mitigation professionals. Licensing, testing, auditing and continuing education are all now required by law. You can be assured that Diamonds In The Rough Home Inspections meets these requirements.
My Minnesota MDH Radon Measurement Providers License is No. RMEA-00068
Please be aware, testing providers without this license are subject to a fine as well as the radon test being invalidated.