a row of condos on a residential street

Radon Disclosure Reminder

You might have heard of radon but have no idea what it is or how it could affect your work as a real estate licensee. If so, now’s a good time to review BCFSA’s Radon Precaution Guidelines and why you need to know more.

Radon is an invisible, odorless gas that can be harmful when it seeps into a closed space like a house. When radon decays, it gives off tiny radioactive particles that can damage the cells that line the lung, and long-term exposure can lead to lung cancer.

Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in B.C. and Canada, preceded only by smoking.

But what does that have to do with you?

If you are working as a buyer’s agent, it’s a good idea to ask the seller or listing agent if a radon test has been completed, and if so, to see the results. Potential buyers won’t discover radon levels through pre-purchase inspections because testing takes three months to complete.

Radon concentration is measured in Becquerels per cubic metre, or Bq/m³. If you learn from your seller or landlord client that the home has been tested for radon and radon levels exceed 200 Bq/m³, this constitutes a material latent defect, and you must disclose this information to potential buyers or tenants. This disclosure must be made to potential buyers in writing.

To facilitate the disclosure, the seller can use a property disclosure statement, such as the one developed by the BC Real Estate Association, which has questions about radon.

One out of every six B.C. homes record radon above 200 Bq/m³. The usual remediation for radon is drilling holes in the ground outside the home to provide the gas an escape route.

Take the time to inform yourself on radon to help ensure you and your buyer/seller clients are protected. For more information, watch our webinar with Dr. Pearson.