What is a home asbestos survey?
A home asbestos survey is an assessment of the internal and external areas of a house to determine location/s of asbestos containing materials (ACM). There are 3 types of surveys:
- Asbestos Management Survey
- Asbestos Refurbishment Survey
- Asbestos Demolition Survey
The survey relevant to you will depend on your requirements and we can advise you on this. The survey includes a visual assessment of the property backed up by photographs, with samples taken if required. Following the completion of a survey a report will be produced which includes the type, condition, location and amount of any ACM. The required action/s will depend on the outcome of the survey.
Following the home asbestos survey
If asbestos is identified in your home there are generally three recommended ways to deal with it:
- Leave the asbestos alone – if the asbestos is in good condition and is in a location where it is not likely to be disturbed your best option could be ‘doing nothing’. Follow up home asbestos surveys should be carried out regularly to monitor and ensure the condition does not change.
- Encapsulation – in some cases the most practical and cost-effective way to deal with asbestos is to encapsulate it, which can mean sealing, painting or enclosing it. An example where this might be relevant could be on a super-6 roof where replacing it could be more expensive than encapsulation.
- Removal – in cases where the condition of the asbestos is poor and deteriorating, removal may be your best option. To ensure your safety, it’s not recommended you carry out any asbestos removal yourself. At this point we recommend consulting expert asbestos removalists.
Thomas Consultants has a large team of IP402 certified Asbestos Surveyors who can safely, accurately and cost-effectively conduct home asbestos surveys and testing on your property. We can also produce Asbestos Management Plans and put you in touch with trusted Removalists. Contact us today for further information.
When do I need a home asbestos survey?
You should consider having a home asbestos survey conducted on your property if:
- You are looking to start renovations, repairs or maintenance and your house was built prior to the year 2000. Builders and tradespeople may ask to see results from asbestos testing prior to commencing work.
- You have a particular area or location in your home that you are concerned might contain asbestos and would like confirmation.
- You have found a property (built prior to 2000) you would like to purchase but suspect there could be asbestos present.
- You are selling your property and would like to be transparent with any asbestos that may be present (or provide evidence that there is not any).
- You are a landlord and are required to provide an Asbestos Management Plan for your rental properties.
What can I expect from a home asbestos survey?
Most home asbestos surveys will take between 30 – 45 minutes and the usual process is:
- Before the survey begins an asbestos surveyor will contact you to arrange a convenient time;
- Upon arrival, the asbestos surveyor will identify themselves and explain the asbestos survey process;
- An initial visual inspection will be conducted to identify the materials suspected of containing asbestos;
- The surveyor will conduct a full digital audit of the suspected materials during the asbestos survey;
- If any sampling is required it will be undertaken according to WorkSafe NZ Guidelines
- After completion of the survey, a full asbestos report will be supplied and the report will contain the type, condition, location and amount of any asbestos found. From here, if asbestos is found, you can speak to us about recommended next steps.
Where is asbestos found in homes?
If your home or property was built prior to 2000, there is a chance it could contain asbestos. Here are some common areas it might be located:
- Walls – including exterior cladding (imitation bricks pictured) and interior
- Gutters, spouting, rain headers and downpipes
- Electrical meter boards, fuses and fuse backings
- Vinyl floors
For a graphical representation of where asbestos might be found in homes click here.