for sale sign in front of house

Should I Buy a House With an Underground Oil Tank?

House shopping is no easy task, and when you come across a home you love, you are hard-pressed to give it up. But what if the home inspector reports there’s an old or leaking oil tank under the property? Should you still move forward with the sale? 

Buying property with an abandoned underground tank is a risky investment because you could face costly fees if the tank is leaking. Here, we cover some of the risks associated with buying a home with a buried oil tank and tips on protecting yourself when moving forward with the purchase.

Risks of Underground Oil Tanks

If your Pennsylvania inspector detects an underground oil tank on the property you’re interested in, you should consider the risk factors associated with this. Buried tanks are often made of metal, and metal corrodes and rusts, leading to oil leaks that could go undetected for long periods. These leaks cause contaminated soils and property damage.

The oil leaks cause hazardous fumes that can permeate throughout your basement, the first floor of your home, and the soil around your property. It poses a health risk to not only you and your family but also the wildlife around you.

Because it’s so expensive to repair the damage from these leaks, many people get homeowners insurance with supplemental tank insurance to cover the costs. If they are uninsured or underinsured, they would be responsible for all cleanup costs themselves.

Guidelines for Buying a House with a Buried Oil Tank

An abandoned underground oil tank can lead to disastrous results, so before buying a property with a buried tank, make sure you work with specialists experienced in locating and decommissioning oil tanks. They can perform a tank integrity test and a soil sample analysis to detect any leaks, damages, or contamination.

Even if the old oil tank is not leaking now, it may begin to leak in the future. Because of this, we recommend decommissioning the tank. Ideally, you would request for the seller to remove the tank before taking ownership of the property. If they say it’s already been decommissioned, be sure to get a copy of the official decommissioning statement. Check with your local fire department and state records.

If you purchase the home before discovering the abandoned buried oil tank, you will be responsible for the soil testing and the removal of the tank yourself.

Removing an Oil Tank Buried Under Your Property

When you fall in love with a home and begin dreaming of the life you’ll have there, you don’t want to give it up, even if you hear bad news like there’s an underground oil tank on the property. The good news is that you don’t have to give up on this dream home. When you work with Professional Tank & Environmental, an oil tank removal company in Pennsylvania, you’ll receive exceptional service so you can get back to making your dream a reality.

Whether you need an oil tank removal in Reading, PA or an oil tank inspection in Philly, our team has your back. Contact us today, and our team will discuss your oil tank needs.