In the past, it was a common practice for homes to be heated by oil with storage tanks buried underground. Today, many, but not all, homes have been converted to gas heat provided direct by public utilities. Those that have remained with oil as a heating source are moving their storage tanks to above ground units primarily due to the risk of ground contamination.
Whether converting to gas, installing a new storage tank above ground, or purchasing a home with an abandoned underground storage tank, the removal of the tank may need to be completed. This will require hiring a licensed UST contractor who will coordinate opening permits with the required municipal authorities. If the tank is removed and there is no evidence of a leak, the municipality will close the permit and with minimal or no delay. However, if there is any evidence of a leak, the NJ DEP will need to be notified. If contamination is confirmed, remediation must be completed. Upon completion and confirmation of clear soil tests, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection will provide a letter stating that no further action (NFA) is required, and the permit can be closed out. The NFA letter is only provided if a leak was evident, otherwise, the NJ DEP will not be involved with an underground storage tank removal.
At Petriello Law, we are happy to lend our years of experience working with those navigating the process of buying or selling a home that has an underground storage tank. If you need an attorney for a real estate transaction, please call or e-mail us today.