• Welcome to AppraisersForum.com, the premier online  community for the discussion of real estate appraisal. Register a free account to be able to post and unlock additional forums and features.

possible VOC contamination-owner already compensates for it!

Status
Not open for further replies.

Frank Bertrand

Thread Starter
Junior Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
Inspected a new 2500 sg ft addition to a 2500 sq ft house. Owner has radiant heating installed in all common areas. Heating is going through OSB ("aspenite", "Chipboard", etc.) subfloor.

I inquired about the heating the OSB and if there would be any VOC's (volitile Organic Compounds) emmitted from the glues used in the OSB. Owner says he has already compensated by installing a air circulation system to remove any trace of VOC's if emmitted. Owner relates that the sleeping areas (8 br's) are heated by conventional HW BB propane fired boiler, and 1 BR heated by electrical BB. Owner also has central air conditioning "with extra HEPA filters". So I wonder to myself, "hey, you already have a forced air system, why not just save the bother and money and heat THAT air to warm the house". I didn't tell the owner that though...

Owner relates that health problems of family preclude use of forced air heat of any type, and anyway, "I've taken care of possible contamination by installing the fresh air circulation systems..."

Owner further states that the carpeting in the radiant heated area will be wool carpeting to lessen emmission of glues in convential carpeting and any tile would be glued using a water based adhesive, rather than the std glues.

Now, I am curious as to how I would treat this. Does anyone know IF the OSB when heated will emit VOC. How would one mention possible problems and the solution the owner has already installed. So How would the market response react to a possible health hazard even if the present owner says he has taken steps to mitigate it? SImilar to radon? read on...

This fellow, when the new basement was excavated installed below the foundation exhaust piping "just in case" radon was discovered later on. I believe that some of these baubbles (2 heating, one a/c system and the radon piping) are super adequate--don't know about this owner. probably has a bomb shelter or fraidy closet installed in the basement--after all there are 3 'utility rooms' in the schematic!!
 

Terrel L. Shields

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
I would only state what you stated and suggest a home inspection to the lender with the caveat that the appraisal is subject to the VOC not being a market negative. And that you have no data to suppose that it would be.
 

Charlotte Dixon

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Delaware
I inquired about the heating the OSB and if there would be any VOC's (volitile Organic Compounds) emmitted from the glues used in the OSB. Owner says he has already compensated by installing a air circulation system to remove any trace of VOC's if emmitted.

Don't go there, Frank. As stated above, just write what you saw and require a home inspection. Don't get backed in a corner with some knowledge you have that could get you in trouble. Good Luck!
 

Restrain

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Florida
Absolutely DO NOT go with "the owner said". Comment, then use an environmental disclaimer, such as the one mentioned in the General forum a while back. You are NOT (unless you ARE) an environmental inspector and and recommend that the borrower get an environmental assessment. (I wouldn't recommend to the lender that they get one. The comment is enough of a red flag). Secondly, any value is based on there being no environmental issues. Definitely CYA.

Good Luck.
Roger Strahan, SRA
 

Frank Bertrand

Thread Starter
Junior Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
Thanks for the good advice!! I intend to file a narrative report as I really can't find any sales comps of a 2500 sq foot existing home that is having a 2500 sq ft addition being grafted to the original structure.

The client wants the value 'as is' which is driving me crazy as the existing home has its floors all ripped up, walls moved, etc as the work progresses.

When I mention that the owner has 'taken steps' to mitigate the effects, I am informing the lender (I believe if they read the report right) that: 'hey there is something here with the voc's or the guy would not have spent any money to remediate it'
 

Farm Gal

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Nebraska
Frank:

Don't drive yoruself nuts...

The happy(?) homeowner sounds like he is addictively over-engineering in terms of air quality. With a probable family history of over sensitivity to chemicals and such he appears to be the 'nervous nellie' sort who is going to use all available gadgets and opitons: bet he has an ionizer from Sharper Image in each room also :roll:

That said, I would not put too much emphasis on the VOC's. MOST OSB doesn't off gass terribly more than standard issue ply, the VOCs from his fresh paint, and whatever holds the wool carpet together probably contribute more to indoor air pollution than the subfloor!.

In terms of market issues: I'd be willing to bet that 99% of your market prospective buyers will NEVER pull up a carpet to look whats underneath, Won't CARE if it is base, radient or forced air heat aws long as it is warm the day they look at the hosue, and could not care less about these issues....

Now the 'as is' aspect is UGLY! good luck there! (mee too this week :( - ick.)
 

Bill_FL

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Florida
The one thing I noticed in this thread is that the radiant system is being used due to health problems with forced air. Typically, I have seen these people use hard surfaced floors only. Wood, tile, even stained concrete.

I wonder what the family has that would require radiant heat but allow for carpeting? I think it sounds like someone who wants to attempt to have some of the neat things he has seen on This Old House.
 

Farm Gal

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Nebraska
Yeah, and then they put pressboard bookshelves and desks (very high and long term VOC offenders) in the kids rooms :roll:

gotta love it :wink:
 

Frank Bertrand

Thread Starter
Junior Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
Well, This subject is truely unique. The client wants value
"as is". think of it, original home is all torn up, with temp floors and walls (some of blue tarp plastic) the built in appliances in the kitchen are in the middle of the dining room and the client wants "as is".

So I wrote and said no way as is. There are no comparable sales of sfh's in a state of disaray like the subject as the new addition gets grafted on to it.

I intend to do a cost reproduction approach, and just discounting the new construction to per cent complete and the current home with lots of functional curable obsolesence, with the mention to a home inspector for the OSB voc's.

I agree that this guy has od'ed on 'this old house' or similar projects and visualizes a real trophy home.

all of this sits in the middle of 300 acres with a good 180 view of distant mtns. He's buried a 1000 gal propane tank so it doesn't have to get refilled except yearly, generator room, 3 car heated garage, etc. it never ends.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Find a Real Estate Appraiser - Enter Zip Code

Copyright © 2000-, AppraisersForum.com, All Rights Reserved
AppraisersForum.com is proudly hosted by the folks at
AppraiserSites.com
Top

AdBlock Detected

We get it, advertisements are annoying!

Sure, ad-blocking software does a great job at blocking ads, but it also blocks useful features of our website. For the best site experience please disable your AdBlocker.

I've Disabled AdBlock
No Thanks