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Old 01-12-2013, 04:50 PM
 
377 posts, read 519,122 times
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We are in the process of buying a home built in 1969 and, while there have been some minor repairs to the septic system over the years, the system is original to the home. The septic inspector said that, while the system seems to be working ok, it is old and likely nearing the end of its useful life. Our realtor asked if we would like to ask for a credit from the sellers, as this seems to be a likely expense for us,, sooner rather than later. We are new to septic systems....so, what do you think we should be asking for? What would you do in this situation?

Thanks!
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Central, CT
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It's still a buyers market, I'd want an evaluation from a septic company and a credit based on their expert recommendation, you save the money no need to rush into the new system.

You're different people than the ones who lived there before (did they live in the house long term?) it's like knowing which step to skip bc the floorboard is loose. If you're modern people who want 2 showers, the dishwasher and washing machine running in a short window the tank may not be large enough long term.

What kind of lot is the house on? For instance if a septic company finds seepage or tree roots they may have to put a new system in another area of the yard. If its extremely small or rocky your limited options would put you in a bad position. Also if the tank is partially under the house (did the inspector mention? Or could you tell you were far enough away?) it could be a problematic replacement when/if the time comes.
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:11 PM
 
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Spouse of OP here.....We had a septic inspection and they said it is nearing the end of its useful life. It is on 1 acre of land and two of the three fields were near capacity with 2 people living in the home and it is a 4 br home (we are a larger family) so they do not know if the system can handle more water running through it. They said a new system once it inevitibly fails, because it is old, will be $20k plus.

Yes, the sellers are the original owners. The septic is in the backyard, about 75 ft from the back of the house.

Last edited by diydesign; 01-12-2013 at 07:22 PM..
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:21 PM
 
Location: OH>IL>CO>CT
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There is a wealth of information on septic systems at this website: SepticHelp.org
Look particularly at the sections on inspections, maintenance and insurance.

Can the seller provide documentation of regular pumping out of the tank ?? Would the seller pay for an insurance policy ?? Has city sewer been added to the area in recent years ??
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:23 PM
 
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No city sewer. They pumped regularly...last time was this past Spring.
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Old 01-12-2013, 09:04 PM
 
346 posts, read 306,256 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diydesign View Post
Spouse of OP here.....We had a septic inspection and they said it is nearing the end of its useful life. It is on 1 acre of land and two of the three fields were near capacity with 2 people living in the home and it is a 4 br home (we are a larger family) so they do not know if the system can handle more water running through it. They said a new system once it inevitibly fails, because it is old, will be $20k plus.

Yes, the sellers are the original owners. The septic is in the backyard, about 75 ft from the back of the house.
Since you're on septic, you probably have well water. Where is the well? Ideally, you'll want the well and the septic system as far apart as possible. Something to consider should you need new trenches. Also, 20K seems reasonable. Could be more if you need to blast.
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:47 AM
 
377 posts, read 519,122 times
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So, what would you do? Try to negotiate down the price of the home? Ask for a partial credit? We are meeting with our realtor today to give him the list of inspection items needing to be adressed, and he and the owners have asked that all items be presented together at once. What would you do in this situation? The house listing states that "septic inspection, water potability and radon tests have been performed, and all are fine". We had radon tests performed as part of our inspection and the water radon level was revealed to be high and the septic inspection revealed an original system "nearing the end of its useful life." There were other (mostly plumbing) issues also revealed in the report that we are asking the owners to fix. How much should we try to negotiate for? What is "fair and reasonable" and what have you done if in this situation?
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:18 AM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,090 posts, read 18,618,422 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdlugozi View Post
How much should we try to negotiate for? What is "fair and reasonable" and what have you done if in this situation?
You haven't said what town it was in, it's price range, and whether other properties nearby have the same age and issues with the septic. If the house is fairly priced and you want it, I'd ask for a $10K credit toward a new septic system. (That's a guess on my part, assuming the house is priced $400,000 or more.) Assuming you could use the third septic field, I'd just accept the replacement cost for the rest of the system as the cost of living in a house you like.
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:27 AM
 
119 posts, read 146,714 times
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$400k. Nice house that needs some updating, which is reflected in price.

Brookfield

The houses on the street are all around the same age....not sure about their septics.

We will try asking for a partial credit and see what happens, since we are also asking for radon remediation and the correction of some minor plumbing issues as well.

Last edited by diydesign; 01-13-2013 at 06:35 AM..
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Old 01-13-2013, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Denver, CO
8,578 posts, read 5,113,105 times
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Default Son just did that

Quote:
Originally Posted by kdlugozi View Post
We are in the process of buying a home built in 1969 and, while there have been some minor repairs to the septic system over the years, the system is original to the home. The septic inspector said that, while the system seems to be working ok, it is old and likely nearing the end of its useful life. Our realtor asked if we would like to ask for a credit from the sellers, as this seems to be a likely expense for us,, sooner rather than later. We are new to septic systems....so, what do you think we should be asking for? What would you do in this situation?

Thanks!
My son bought a home in the late October in Colorado (2 1/2 acres). It had an old septic tank (1974). He did have it inspected and discovered the top had caved in and sewage was getting out into the surrounding ground. Worse, the septic tank was located within a distance no longer allowed to the water well on the property. Fortunately the well is over 500 feet down (unusual for a well) so their water tested fine.

They wouldn't buy the property until the septic tank was replaced. The seller was very fortunate that the town did not require him to move it to be the currently required distance from the well. The tank had to be dug up, drained, and replaced. Sorry I dont remember the cost of the process, but my son said it wasn't chump change.

Check all the regulations in CT regarding placement of the septic tank. Think how expensive and inconvenient it might be to replace a tank in January or February with the ground snow-covered and perhaps hard as a rock!!

Good luck.
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