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Surprise, Your Home Has Radon!

These are five words you don’t want to hear, whether you’re an Anne Arundel County homeowner testing for your own family’s safety or a seller whose buyer has a contract contingency for a satisfactory radon test.

What are you going to do if results of a radon test reveal that your home has a dangerous level of this carcinogen? 

Most homeowners head straight to their computers to find out exactly what radon is, how it got into their house, and how to make it go away.  Let me save you some time and trouble by giving you a link to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Citizens Guide to Radon for answers to those questions and any others.

TEMP ImageRadon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas that is colorless, odorless, tasteless and basically invisible.  It is very common in wells located in some areas of Anne Arundel County (Radium And Your Drinking Water – A Homeowner’s Guide), so it’s not totally unexpected for an air quality test to yield results exceeding 4 pCi/L in those same areas.  

If your home does have a dangerous level of radon, the “fix” is not terribly expensive or difficult.  There are a number of radon mitigation companies in this area, and installation of a radon mitigation system (right) is usually priced around $900 -$1,200, depending on whether your home is one level or two, has a sump pump or not, and other considerations.  The system can be installed in your home in about 2 hours, and it usually comes with a guarantee.

Since radon is not uncommon in Anne Arundel County, testing is something any homeowner, tenant or homebuyer should do.  You can order a radon test kit online for as little as $25 or, if you prefer, you can have a test conducted by Amerispec or another home inspection company.

Don’t wait ‘til you sell your home and risk hearing “Surprise, Your Home Has Radon!”  No home buyer, real estate agent or inspector wants to tell you that, and I’m sure you don’t want to live in a home with radon un-checked until you sell.

Illustration:  ASHI Radon Mitigation Inspection Checklist

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REMINDER:  The Crofton Regional Community Center is on the agenda at tomorrow night’s meeting (11/10/09) of the Greater Crofton Council.

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