It’s no surprise that the housing marketing certainly favors buyers. With interest rates at all-time lows, now is certainly the time to make that big purchase, whether it’s an investment property or a brand-new place for you to call home.
While individuals are familiar with inspecting a home’s structure, many fail to consider evaluating a property on the outside. What lies underneath the ground or even around a property can be equally as important as the foundation upon which it’s built.
Hiring a reputable environmental consulting firm can be a reliable way to assess your property’s risk for environmental hazards – especially if there is cause for concern. Environmental consultants can perform phase I environmental site assessments (ESA) before you invest any more time or money into a potential property. Within the normal parameters of a phase I ESA, these consultants can review:
- Aerial and/or satellite photography of the site
- Title search
- Applicable state and federal files
- Current and historical conditions of the property
- Property environs
They can also put together a detailed report that lists estimated potential for impact and any findings that their research unveils. Understanding these details can help you make an educated decision on a property purchase and can also help you determine if the seller should invest in remedial action. It’s recommended that commercial, industrial, multi-family and any underdeveloped properties receive phase I ESAs due to the potential for environmental risks.
The risks of not getting a phase I ESA include purchasing a property that cannot serve the function you need it to based on unforeseen environmental risks. Plus, once the property is yours, it can be a costly project to undergo remedial action to fix issues that could have been discovered on the front end.
Before you make a big real estate purchase, consider investing in a phase I ESA to understand the facts before you buy!
—Georgia Oilmen’s Services is a leading environmental consulting firm serving cities across Georgia.