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Gas tanks have been removed from my mom's property, but DEQ is requesting more testing. The agency I am working with says we can go ahead with the sale and he will talk to anyone to assure them no cost will be passed on to them. The house is now in my name, but it was in my mom's name when the investigation started. Would you recommend that I continue with the sale of Mom's home or wait until the issues are settled? I would like to move ahead as the longer the house sits the more chance there is that something will happen inside/outside the home.

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I am going thru this now. House in mom's name. She is in memory care and I as DPOA am selling property. Just had tank removed and awaiting results of soil testing. Hopeing DEQ will show clearance/compliance. The reputable environmental tank removal company has remediated pending soil test outcome.

THe house was sold; buyer aware of recent tank removal. Supposed to settle this week. Hoping soil test will be the documented support that all is okay and that will be the end of it.

Agree with others; don't YOU take ownership of property until you are sure everything has been checked out or the buyer signs some sort of agreement that they will take responsibility (which I doubt). Postpone the sale date if possible and get the tank soil sampled and cleared before you move further. Your real estate agent should be able to guide you thru this.

Mine did and it was the first thing we did - schedule a company to come out and remove the tank and take required soil samples.
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In Massachusetts a bill was passed back I. The late 90s. Buyer sure can come back on seller for the liability. Now..if seller can prove the contamination happened before they bought...then seller can go back on previous owner. But..all this is expensive legal mess.

Realestate agent is not responsible for not disclosing what they didn't know.   

Wait till the results are in.
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Beaverdam, just curious if the Buyer knows about the removal of the tanks... where they underground "gas" tanks which are common on working farms, or "oil" tanks used to heat the house? Oil tanks can be either above the ground, or in the basement, or buried. Did you sign a form that was pre-printed regarding such tanks so that any buyers will know such a tank had existed?

This is a situation were most Sellers are not familiar with the issues of such tanks, and neither are most Real Estate Agents. Could your Real Estate Agent recommend an inspector to check this out, someone who has had years of experience with such issues.... there are inspection expects in all area of building oops through-out the years. In my area, lead based paint and old polyethylene water pipes are the most concern, and the real estate board has necessary disclosers/disclaimers that the Seller can sign to pass onto future buyers.

Hopefully this won't happen, but if the Buyers do come back after closing, the Real Estate Agents and their respective real estate companies will be named. But then again, most Real Estate Agents have malpractice insurance to cover such court cases.
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I'd see if within the Act of Sale paperwork there is included another document - done by a real estate atty - as to existing condition of the property & future remediation.
It's similar to a covenant. Not a DIY, you need savvy real estate guy.

If this is still being listed, the document is attached to the condition of property document. For MLS listings, there's a standard 3 -4 pager on this. You new statement gets attached.

Otherwise, buyer can come back on you. For sale price plus perhaps " opportunity lost" which will be a figure that could be bigly.

We went through hurricane Katrina & lots of folks placed property on market. Could have been sitting in 6' of water for 6 weeks; or vaporized except for foundation; or had macerator/sceptic tank systems. Huge post sale problem was that mold $$$ remediation was needed, or foundation was compromi$ed or there was no way to get sewer hook up. Property either very expensive or worthless to build on. Sellers were sued & usually successfully. It is one of the reasons why even today - a dz years post storm - that theres still property abandoned in LA & coastal MS.

You need some sort of CYA document in the listing or the act of sale regarding gas tank & surrounding ground remediation, & done by an atty.
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Removal of contaminated soil can run into millions.

Keep this in your moms name. If she worst happens...she can ignore it....and it will not effect her life....she is probably collection proof even now. BUT...you do not want this to ruin your life! You cannot bankrupt out of this type of liability.

This can and is a serious issue. Get that house out of your name. Recind the transfer, whatever. Till the results are in.
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