If you are thinking about buying a home, you know that there is a lot to consider. Though the septic system may not be at the top of your list, it’s worth it to get a careful inspection before buying. Not every homeowner knows how to properly maintain their septic system, and their lack of care could lead to stinky, expensive problems in your future.

There’s a common misconception that nobody uses septic systems anymore. In reality, approximately 21% of American households, many in rural or suburban areas, still use septic systems and are happy with them. If you get an inspection and ensure that your septic system is properly maintained, it will serve you for 20-30 years

There are many reasons to get a septic system inspection before buying a home. Let’s talk about 5 big reasons. We will also discuss some surprising causes of septic system problems. Don’t go into a home purchase feeling unsure. If you get a septic system inspection, you can feel confident in your decision to buy that dream house.

Why You Need a Septic System Inspection Before Buying a Home, Advanced Septic Services of Florida


1. Septic systems are about more than just toilets

Talking about toilets isn’t always pleasant, so let’s consider some other things.  Are you a fan of cooking meals with the family? Do you like clothes that are fresh and clean? Do you want to avoid being called the smelly guy at the office? If you skip a septic system inspection, you might as well answer “no” to these questions. 

Any drainage that happens in the home, from the kitchen sink, to dishwashers, showers, and washing machines, leads straight to the septic system.  It is important to keep those toilets flushing, and those kitchen sinks draining, and that washing machine cleaning.

2. A home inspector will not necessarily look at the septic system

When buying a home, consider that the home inspection doesn’t necessarily cover the septic system, even though it is integral to a comfortable home. Home inspectors are not required, nor do they have the expertise, to perform a full septic system inspection. The most that they will do is a visual inspection, which does not cover some of the problems that a septic system may have due to neglect or lack of maintenance. 

There are some surprising causes of septic system damage, such as pouring cooking oil, grease, or even coffee grounds down the kitchen sink. Other common causes are flushing disposable wipes, sanitary products, or cotton swabs down the toilet. Homeowners may not be aware that using household cleaners that contain bleach too often can cause septic system problems. These can hurt the bacteria that are necessary to the process of breaking down waste.

3. Problems with a septic system can go unnoticed at first

In addition to the causes previously mentioned, there are other insidious causes of septic malfunction. If trees are planted too close, the roots can create blockages or leaks. Because many of these culprits are unknown or misunderstood by homeowners, the problems can go unnoticed for a period of time. If you neglect to get a septic system inspection before buying, the hidden problems could sneak up on you only after it is too late to affordably deal with it.

4. It will save you money on unnecessary repair costs in the future

A septic system inspection is more cost-effective and efficient than dealing with septic system issues only after problems become apparent. 

If the inspector does find problems with the septic system, you can negotiate with the seller to try to lower the cost of the property, or you can ask them to make the repairs before purchase. If there are no problems with the system, it will be helpful to know the level of maintenance so that you are not caught off-guard at some point in the future.

5. You can evaluate if the septic system in place meets your household needs.

A septic system inspection is a great opportunity to consider potential changes. Some older septic systems may have undersized tanks and may not be adequate for your family size. Take this time to consider your needs. If the previous household was a smaller family, you may want to upgrade your system instead of waiting for the system to become backed up due to overuse. Advanced Septic Services can accommodate any changes or upgrades you might want. 

Do not skip this important step before buying a home. Contact a qualified septic system inspector to ensure that this really is the house of your dreams.