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Radon Gas Factsheet
Radon is a natural radioactive gas, which cannot be seen or tasted. It comes from the uranium within rocks and soils. The levels of Radon differs through the country, however parts of the uk within the locality of our offices may be a higher risk area.
Within the conveyancing process we do not undertake a Radon Gas Test which is the only reliable guide to the level of radon in a building which is a measurement over a period long enough to average out short-term variations in radon levels - this should ideally be three months
We undertake an environmental search and Local Authority search which enables us to assess the level of risk for Radon within the locality of the property (this does not state whether or not the property is at risk). If this is medium to high, we would recommend that the property is tested for Radon before exchange takes place or if due to the time it takes to undertake a full search this is not practicable that a Radon Gas Bond is entered into.
With a Radon gas bond the buyer and seller agree on a likely sum of money, enough to cover typical radon reduction costs (normally between £750.00 and £4000.00). The money is taken out of the buyer's paying price and held by a third party (for example, the sellers solicitors) until the test result is known and any reduction measures have been done. Both parties sign a contract that lays down how the bond will work. If the test shows there is no problem, the bond money goes to the seller. If the test shows there is a problem, reduction work is paid for from the bond money; any excess is returned to the seller. For the bond to work, it must be fair to both parties. It must reflect reasonable costs, not the most expensive possible solution. The bond's life must be realistic, allowing - for example - nine months from completion of house sale to a radon test result, with another six months for reduction work if needed.
A test pack can be ordered from www.UKradon.org, or you can leave your name and address on the free radon answerphone 0800 614529 for an information pack.
The detector pack includes 2 detectors which are placed around the property for 3 months, before being returned in the packaging provided. The results will then be posted out to you.
If the levels are above the action level the most effective way to deal with radon is to fit a radon sump to the property to vent the gas into the atmosphere. The sump connects a pipe from the property to the outside, which with a small electric fan, sucks all the radon from the property.
For further information on radon, visit the website www.UKradon.org/.
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