A group of six natural minerals, asbestos is made up of soft fibers that are resistant to electricity, heat and corrosion. This makes it useful for insulation purposes, however exposure to asbestos has been proven to have dangerous health impacts. Once asbestos dust is inhaled, fibers can get trapped in the body, in serious cases causing a kind of cancer known as mesothelioma. Hence, if you are considering buying a new home, it is better to be safe than sorry – consider hiring an asbestos inspector to check things out before sealing the deal.
Is Asbestos Inspection included in Home Inspection Services?
Before purchasing property, a home inspection will typically be carried out to evaluate the structure and condition of the home. This includes but is not limited to the condition of plumbing, walls and HVAC systems. However, it is important to note that most home inspectors are not qualified to conduct asbestos inspections. If you want to be doubly sure, you can check the home inspection contract. It will be stated that they do not comment on the presence or lack thereof of asbestos if they do not provide the service. This will lead to asbestos-containing materials going undetected, which could potentially be dangerous.
What are the Legal Regulations for Destructive Asbestos Inspections?
By law, the seller is not obliged to permit destructive asbestos testing during the inspection period. If you have spoken to the seller and they do not allow it, this is largely because asbestos sampling can be a destructive process. To do so, a sample will have to be collected from the suspected material and damage may be caused to the affected area. This is all before the deal has been closed, so you can understand why some sellers may be reluctant to permit it. Furthermore, if an asbestos-containing material is detected, they stand not only to lose the sale, but the value of the property will almost definitely go down.
Compromises and Non-Destructive Asbestos Inspections
If the seller is reluctant to permit destructive asbestos inspection for aesthetic reasons, a compromise can be reached by cutting out wall from an inconspicuous part of the house. This can be along the lines of a piece of wall inside a wardrobe or sink cabinet. But what if the seller is against any destructive testing at all?
In such cases, an asbestos inspector can be hired to do a walkthrough of the property without taking any samples. Although the presence of asbestos cannot be ascertained with this method, certain concern areas such as pipe insulations can be pointed out. Additionally, a TEM asbestos dust test can be carried out to give an indication of deteriorated asbestos in the air.
If you are buying a new house or suspect that asbestos is present in your house, get it checked out immediately. At Iris Environmental Laboraties, our professional asbestos inspectors conduct inspections of your property to give you complete peace of mind. We also provide sample testing services and will notify you of the results within 24 hours of submission or payment, whichever is later. Do not risk the health of you and your loved ones – get your property tested for asbestos today!