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Conveyancing What role can it play in identifying and remediating homes above 200 Bq/m3?

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Conveyancing What role can it play in identifying and remediating homes above 200 Bq/m3? Stephanie Long Senior Scientist, Radon Advice – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Conveyancing What role can it play in identifying and remediating homes above 200 Bq/m3?


1
ConveyancingWhat role can it play in
identifying and remediating homes above 200
Bq/m3?
  • Stephanie Long
  • Senior Scientist, Radon Advice

2
Why conveyancing?
  • Approximately 1.9 million households in Ireland
    (80 privately owned)
  • National Radon Survey estimated 91,000 homes
    exceed 200 Bq/m3
  • 5,000 of these identified (of 36,000 measured)
  • Current measurement rate about 4,000 annually

3
Why conveyancing?
  • At this rate, it would take 400 years to measure
    the full housing stock
  • Clearly, it is important to greatly increase the
    rate at which homes are measured
  • Including radon in conveyancing is one way to
    increase the measurement rate
  • 2008 figures for home purchases indicate that, on
    average, all the existing housing stock would be
    bought and sold over the next 40 years

4
International recommendations
  • WHO 2009 A requirement for radon measurements at
    the time of sale of homes can be beneficialin
    ensuring that dwellings exceeding the reference
    level are identified and remediated
  • WHO 2007 survey of radon programmes
    internationally identified a number of other
    countries that include radon in conveyancing
  • Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Norway, Sweden,
    Switzerland, UK, US
  • RPII follow-up up this survey (2008) to gather
    further information from these countries

5
England and Wales
  • Property purchase requires an enquiry form (Law
    Society CON29) to be sent to local authority for
    completion - checks whether there are charges
    enforcable by the local authority
  • Includes the compulsory question (2002)
  • Is the property in a radon affected area?
  • If yes further questions are asked
  • If the property is in a radon effected area, has
    it been tested for radon?
  • If so, did the radon level exceed the action
    level?
  • If so, have remedial measures been installed?
  • If they have, has the house been re-tested and
    shown to be below the Action Level?

6
England and Wales
  • Where no measurements have been carried out and
    the buyer is concerned that there is a risk from
    radon a radon bond may be agreed
  • A clause in the purchase contract allowing the
    buyer to retain a small part of the purchase
    price
  • Used to pay for remedial work if necessary
    following purchase

7
England and Wales
  • HPA consider inclusion of these questions on the
    CON29 form as a key success in raising awareness
    of radon among home buyers
  • HPA recently estimated that most individual
    householders measuring in the UK are driven by
    home purchases
  • No data re use of radon bond but HPA aware it
    is used regularly

8
Sweden
  • Swedish implementation of Directive 2002/91/EC on
    energy performance of buildings (BER)
  • Requires a report re a buildings energy use and
    indoor environment when buildings are
    constructed, sold or rented
  • This report includes whether a radon measurement
    has been carried out and, if so, what the levels
    are (non-mandatory)

9
Switzerland
  • Legally binding requirement
  • Enforced by Radon Agencies within Office of
    Works (responsibility for implementation of
    building regulations)
  • Measurement and remediation costs borne by owner

10
Internationally
  • Wide range of different approaches to radon and
    conveyancing
  • Generally
  • Not a mandatory requirement, but a strong
    recommendation
  • Onus on buyer to include radon in process
  • Onus on seller to fund measurement and
    remediation

11
Advantages to introduction in Ireland
  • Cost neutral to Government
  • Cost to homeowers relatively small in context of
    conveyancing
  • Increased measurements
  • Raised awareness

12
Dis-advantages to introduction in Ireland
  • 3 month measurement requirement (identified
    internationally as a problem)
  • Non-mandatory requirement

13
Three month measurement requirement
  • 3 month measurement required due to significant
    fluctuation in radon concentration
  • Due to changes in temperature, atmospheric
    pressure, wind direction and speed, behaviour of
    occupants
  • Three-month measurement needed to average out
    the impact of these variables
  • Recent research carried out to determine
    possability of a shorter screening measurement
    of 1 month

14
Short-term measurement project
  • Measurement data for over 500 homes collected
  • Measurements carried out for 1 month and 3 months
  • Statistical analysis of results show that 1 month
    measurement screening is feasible
  • RPII will publish protocol regarding this in 2010

15
(No Transcript)
16
Options for Ireland
  • Legal advice has identified two options
  • Amendment to Law Society of Irelands standard
    contract (for second-hand homes, similar contract
    for new homes)
  • Amendment to Law Society of Irelands Objections
    and Requisitions on Title
  • RPII currently seeking a meeting with the Law
    Societys Conveyancing Committee
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