Monday, June 4, 2012

Septic Tank inspections no longer required in Escambia County~

Septic tank inspections no longer required in PensacolaNew Florida Statute drops requirement for septic tank inspection

Last week, I saw an announcement on the Pensacola Association of Realtors website in regards to septic tank inspections that Escambia County septic tank inspections are no longer required when selling (or buying) a home! I was a little surprised to see this- as septic tank issues can be costly to fix!

Regardless of the change in FL statute, I will suggest to our clients that they still have a licensed plumber or septic tank company do a visual inspection on the septic tank and drainfield lines to ensure there are no issues. You can contact a company to do an inspection a septic tank for between $150 and $400 depending on the scope of the inspection and whether or not the tank is pumped prior to inspecting.

You still have the option to get an inspection
Although you are not required to, you still have the option to get a septic tank inspection. Frankly, I'm unsure why the state of Florida made this change. However, if you are purchasing a home with a septic tank, it is, in my opinion, a good idea to have the tank inspected. The plumbing system in your home is pretty important. Most of the homes in our area with septic tanks are older or located farther away from city limits. Especially with an older tank, having an operable septic tank is important when making the decision to purchase a home. If you are opting for the septic tank inspection, make sure you have a septic tank inspection contingency as part of your contract and
get the inspection completed prior to the inspection period.

Further questions about septic tanks? Call my friends at: Ensley Septic (850) 476-9610 or Economy Septic Tank (850) 968-5130 or visit the Escambia County Health Department online or by phone at (850) 595-6786.

Here's a copy of the letter that we saw in case you wanted to read it.

"To Whom it May Concern:
The Environmental Health Division of the Escambia County Health Department has conducted property sale inspections as required by Escambia County Ordinance Chapter 98, Article III since August 1999. As of April 27, 2012, House Bill 1263 became a law and prohibits the requirement for an evaluation of a septic system at the point of sale. House Bill 1263 modifies Florida Statute Section 381.0065 to now state the following:
"381.00651 Periodic evaluation and assessment of onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems.-
.... (4) Notwithstanding any other provisions in this section, a county or municipality that has adopted a program before July 1, 2011 may continue to enforce its current program without having to meet the requirements of this section, provided such program does not require an evaluation at the point of sale in a real estate transaction..."

This modification supersedes the current Ecambia County Ordinance and property sale inspections of septic tank systems are no longer required.

If a septic tank system is requested or required to be performed by a seller, buyer, or lender, the inspection must be performed in accordance with the 'Procedure for Voluntary Inspection and assessment of Exisiting Systems" in Chapter 64E-6 of the Florida Administrative Code.  The inspection must be conducted by a master septic tank contractor, a registered septic tank contractor, a state-licensed plumber, or persons certified under section 381.0101, Florida Statutes with the exception of Department of Health employees.

Please post pertinent information from this letter on your website in hopes to reach out to as many local realtors as possible. Please do not hesitate to call (850) 595-6786 with any questions"

 Signed by Mr. Phillip Davies, Environmental Supervisor 1

Until next time,
Nicole St. Aubin, Broker Associate
Realty Masters of FL ~ # 1 in Pensacola Rental Homes & Apartments!
(850) 473-3983 ~ Over 35 rentals available at
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  1. AGPIC

    Wow, great article, I really appreciate your thought process and having it explained properly, thank you!

  2. Good article. Inspection of septic tank is not frequently required if you take care and maintain it well. Reducing dumping heavy solid waste, usage of chemical substances, and heavy usage of water will ruin the functioning of septic tank. Septic tank cleaning is required only when the sewage water reaches peak level in the container. Contacting a professional septic tank pumping service provider will sure help in solving your problem at affordable cost.

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