Then you'd better shop around.
When you need to hire a septic system inspector, there are two important things to remember:
- MassDEP does not regulate inspection fees, nor does any other state agency. Inspectors can charge whatever their customers are willing to pay. The fee also may vary depending on the complexity of the inspection.
- Only certain professionals may perform Title 5 system inspections:
- Professionals who meet experience requirements and have passed a MassDEP-administered exam;
- Registered Sanitarians;
- Certified Health Officers; and
- Registered Professional Engineers who specialize in civil, environmental or sanitary engineering.
For a list of qualified system inspectors in your area, contact your local Board of Health. You can also see lists of approved system inspectors on the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control website.
- Before hiring anyone, do some comparison shopping:
- Get written estimates from several inspectors. Ask them whether the price of the inspection includes pumping the system; often it does not.
- Ask for and check each inspector's identification and references.
- Before signing a contract, be certain that it spells out the work plan, the cost and payment terms, and any guarantees the inspector is willing to provide.
- Once the inspection is complete, make sure the person who signs the form is the same person who conducted the inspection.