When selling your property, you should know what potential buyers look for and what are those that can turn them off. For one, a property with a more friendly and generic look is less likely to put off picky buyers than one with an over-styled aesthetic. A plain and humble look also makes it easy for interested buyers to picture the property as their own, mentally putting their furniture and décor inside it, hence guaranteeing a sale. 

But, if your property has an underground oil tank, either it can delay or permanently affect the plans of both the developer and buyer and can even pose environmental and health risks to the inhabitants of the land. And, no buyer would want to be held liable for a property with an abandoned oil tank. 

Why Do Properties Have Oil Tanks?

The most common reasons for a property to have tanks are the storage of motor fuels to run vehicles or equipment, the storage of used oil, and the storage of heating fuel to provide buildings with heat. 

All tanks having a capacity greater than 1,100 gallons, and commercial tanks that have greater than 110 gallons, are regulated by the Department of Environmental Protection. All heating fuel tanks of 1,100 gallons or less are not regulated by the department. 

If leaks were marked, you can find help from NJ oil tank removal since they provide cost-effective oil tank solutions to your oil tank needs. You can also contact your local authorities should the situation get worse.

Guidelines for Selling Property with an Underground Oil Tank 

Identify Age of the tank

As a rule of thumb, the older the tank, the greater the potential for problems. Like a corroding or rusting steel tank, tanks can degrade over time and create holes that can be released. Older tanks can also be the target of additional monitoring and testing requirements.

Furthermore, the risk of leaks in tanks older than 10 years is higher. That’s why, if the tank spills, lenders are concerned with cleaning costs and liability. Before borrowing money for the house, they could enable the buyer to inspect the site for pollution. State regulations mandate that, apart from heating fuel tanks, controlled tanks should comply with financial responsibility provisions that guarantee the capacity of the owner to pay for them.

Comply with state requirements for removing a tank

If the removal or abandonment of the tank should be done, the property owner will have to inform the state regulatory agency before taking any action. There are unique forms that several states and local jurisdictions must complete. This can be done with the following process:

Choosing a contractor. It is a requirement to use the services of a licensed contractor for the removal of a regulated tank in most states. Choose a contractor who has experience with tanks like the ones on the property to guarantee the best service. A list of certified contractors will even be provided by some states.

Sampling before selling. A contractor unloads the contents of the Underground Storage Tank of its Sale Property, cleans, removes, and disposes of the tank and related components such as piping, vent lines, remote fills, dispensers, etc. 

Soil and groundwater, if found, must be sampled from locations during the excavation and removal of these objects. An environmental audit is suggested to see if there was a production process or company that may have had tanks, a consultant will investigate the past of the property. 

To search for any evidence that tanks may have been on the land at one time, or may have been paved over or covered up, the contractor may also do a site audit. The consultant can take soil samples for analysis to check for the presence of contaminants if evidence of a previously installed tank is found.

Report. For underground storage tank closure reports, each state has distinct requirements. The removal activities discussed above are generally summarized, including disposal documentation of components of the UST system, soil disposal documentation, a site plan illustrating sampling location, and analytical information from samples of soil and groundwater. This analytical review will indicate whether there has been any quantifiable effect on the subsurface and will help decide whether further action is warranted.

Tank registration. The registration of the tank must be updated to reflect all modifications. State regulations typically require Storage Tank Registration Amendment Form to be submitted signaling a tank’s permanent closure. 

A properly recorded tank removal negates the need for a Phase II Environmental Site Assessment, if it is not necessary, and streamlines the selling of land. Environmental legislation relating to underground storage tank repair, closure, and property transfers can be confusing and complicated and vary slightly within each state.

In addition, if the tank is properly closed, the seller should have a copy of the closure letter sent to the owner of the tank. It would be wise to examine the site if the tank was not properly locked, or if the seller had no details on the former tanks. To assess what environmental effects the tank may have had on this site or adjacent land, the seller or the buyer might employ an environmental consultant to investigate and/or sample the site. Check with the Department to see if any leaks have been identified on this site.

Find A Trusted Real Estate Agent

Finding a good and reliable real estate agent is the first and most important step in selling your property. With their guidance, not only can they help you sell your house quicker, but they can also get you the right buyer. 

A realtor with vast market experience can put your property on the market at a very reasonable price. A real estate agent carries a big role in selling property with an underground oil tank. The seller must have a complete record of the seller’s disclosure of the real property condition report. 

underground tanks

Selling a property with an underground oil tank requires a complete and registered record as the basis for acquiring an oil tank. Health and safety are of priority here as property owners will have liability if any occurrence will happen as caused by underground oil tanks. It is therefore important that before selling your property that has an underground oil tank, bear in mind the guidelines mentioned above.