Understand Your Septic Situation For Rural Purchases


Are you planning on buying a home or business plot in a rural area? An escape from city clutter, over-tasked utilities, and a return to nature are all great reasons to move, but an unprepared rural move is a good lesson in why cities are tempting. Sanitation and water delivery are two major requirements for anyone living or working in rural areas, so consider a few septic system maintenance issues to understand how old septic systems and newer options can impact your future.

Not All Septic Tanks Are Obvious

If you've never lived in a rural area or haven't had a home away from city water treatment services, septic tanks can be hard to find. In most modern situations, a septic tank needs to be properly marked when installed, disconnected when sewage treatment facilities take over treatment for the home, or removed. 

Unfortunately, these policies only matter if the septic tank is know. History of thorough documentation of septic tanks is in its infancy, and there could be septic tanks from 20 or more years ago in the area.

It doesn't matter if your home is new or old. Underground septic tanks should have concrete slabs and access ports as passive markers if no signage is available, but it's possible for soil to cover different surfaces over the decades. A trained eye may be able to tell the difference in grass coverage and soil softness, but it often takes a professional.

Why does a hidden septic tank matter? You can't be sure if the last owner of the tank had the system pumped and cleaned out. The previous owner could have run out of money and left the area with no contact, or they could have died with no one aware of their situation to handle the loose ends.

You could have a septic waste leak issue, which could become an expensive problem if you're fined. You may not be ultimately liable if the tank wasn't yours, but the regulatory and legal ordeal of proving your innocence can still be costly.

Inspection, Maintenance, Removal, And New Installation

If your home is in an area that is newly connected to a water treatment facility, it's best to have the septic tank removed. A septic system team can perform the removal and look for any other nearby remnants of septic systems.

For areas that still need septic treatment, a septic system maintenance team can either check the current system for performance or suggest a replacement. Depending on how old the septic system is, there may be some improvements such as drainage fields or leach fields that need to be dug and configured.

If there is already a drainage field, it's still best to inspect the quality to make sure that local area leakage isn't likely to damage vegetation or ground water. Speak with a septic system maintenance professional to discuss your future home's septic situation.


3 August 2017

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