Real estate due diligence is the process of thoroughly researching and vetting a property before purchase. In the case of an area where chemicals may have been used, a site assessment is often recommended to determine if contamination may be present. Care Environmental Remediation Services offers Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs) for real estate buyers in Northern New Jersey, and the surrounding area. Learn more about what these services entail.
From the time a buyer purchases a real estate parcel, they are responsible for all contamination on that site. However, if they’ve done their due diligence and find that contamination previously occurred at the site before they purchased it, the buyer may not be legally or fiscally responsible for the cleanup of that historical contamination. It’s critical that the buyer hires a qualified environmental professional to conduct a thorough assessment before completing a real estate purchase.
ESAs are a type of risk management tool used by real estate owners and insurance companies. Contaminated sites in the U.S. are regulated by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), which establishes responsible parties in contaminated site cleanups. Phase I and II ESAs are standardized investigations, and the requirements for ESAs are governed by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).
Phase I Assessments
A Phase I ESA is an initial study that determines past ownership and usage of a particular site. This helps to identify if contamination is present and how it may have occurred. The team at Care Environmental Remediation Services will review historical property records and maps as part of this initial assessment. Along with a visit to the property in question, a Phase I ESA may include:
- Records requests to institutions, such as utility companies and fire departments
- Review of local, county, and state databases
- Interviews with individuals or organizations associated with the site, such as property managers or past owners
- Aerial photographs of the site
Care Environmental Remediation Services compiles all this information into a standardized report for each client. It’s important to note that no soil or water samples are taken at this point.
Phase II Assessments
If the Phase I ESA indicates that hazardous contamination may be present onsite, Care Environmental Remediation Services may recommend a Phase II ESA. This is an investigation to establish the location, nature, and scope of known or suspected contamination at a particular property. Our team will conduct an extensive assessment that includes:
- Creating delineation sampling plans
- Subsurface drilling to collect soil and groundwater
- Indoor air sampling
- Establishing temporary well points to collect groundwater samples
- Testing sub-slab vapor
As the final step, the assessment also includes a report that recommends the best methods for site remediation.
Get in Touch with Care Environmental Remediation Services
If you are planning on purchasing property in Somerset, Morris County, Warren County, Sussex County, or another area of Northern NJ, make sure you have a thorough environmental assessment. Care Environmental Remediation Services offers Phase I and Phase II ESAs for real estate due diligence purposes. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.