Minnesota’s Radon Awareness Act: January 4, 2014 Real Estate Radio Hour Legal Minute

Why not start with a new Minnesota law for my first Real Estate Radio Hour Legal Minute of 2014?  The new law is Minnesota’s Radon Awareness Act.  You can listen to the clip here.

What is radon, and what does it have to do with real estate?  Radon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas. You cannot see, smell or taste radon, but it may be a problem in your home. The Surgeon General has warned that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States today. If you smoke and your home has high radon levels, you’re at high risk for developing lung cancer. Some scientific studies of radon exposure indicate that children may be more sensitive to radon. This may be due to their higher respiration rate and their rapidly dividing cells, which may be more vulnerable to radiation damage.

The Minnesota Radon Awareness Act does not require radon testing or mitigation. However, many relocation companies and lending institutions, as well as home buyers, require a radon test when purchasing a house.

Effective January 1, 2014, the Minnesota Radon Awareness Act requires additional disclosure and education be provided to potential home buyers during residential real estate transactions in Minnesota. Before signing a purchase agreement to sell or transfer residential real property, the seller shall disclose in writing to the buyer any knowledge the seller has of radon concentrations in the dwelling. The disclosure shall include:

1.   Whether a radon test or tests have occurred on the property;

2. The most current records and reports pertaining to radon concentrations within the dwelling;

3. A description of any radon concentrations, mitigation, or remediation;

4. Information regarding the radon mitigation system, including system description and documentation, if such system has been installed in the dwelling; and

5. A radon warning statement

6. A copy of the Minnesota Department of Health publication entitled “Radon in Real Estate Transactions.”

For more information on the new law, and for copies of the disclosure forms to be completed, please visit the Minnesota Department of Health’s website.

As always, archived segments are available here, and be sure to tune in to the show live every Saturday from 10 AM – 11 AM, Central Time, on WCCO Radio 830 AM.