As of April first of this year, carbon monoxide alarms will have to be installed in all Washington State single family homes that sell on or after that date. The new law applies even if you don’t have use natural gas for cooking and heating!
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a poisonous gas that kills 500 people per year in America. For Washington State alone, 1000 people died from carbon monoxide poisoning between 1990 and 2005. You cannot hear, taste, smell or see this gas. Just this week, two men working in a large underground garage in Seattle’s Greenwood neighborhood were overcome by carbon monoxide gas while pressure washing the walls. The pressure washer ran on natural gas. Fortunately, they are both survived.
The new law requires that carbon monoxide alarms be installed in the following types of properties.
- Manufactured mobile homes
The seller is responsible for installing the alarms as follows:
- On all levels (floors) of the home
- Outside each separate sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of each bedroom
- Must be installed according to the manufacturer’s instructions
Seattle short sale homes are not exempt from this new law even though the home owners may be struggling financially. The one exception is bank-owned homes (REOs) since they are always vacant.
So you Seattle home sellers out there, make sure you have those detectors installed if you list your home for sale. And for you Seattle home buyers, make sure to add these to your check list as part of your property inspection. Even if you are not intending to sell your home anytime soon, its still a good idea to install carbon monoxide alarms. For as little as $25, they’re worth it!