Hazardous Material Removal 101

Property Preservation specialists have a wide range of job descriptions and duties when it comes to preserving the condition and value of a property. One that can sometimes be overlooked is the removal of hazardous materials. This doesn’t always mean materials that you need to call in a Hazmat team to handle. Hazardous materials can also include but are not limited to things like pesticides, gasoline, paint and paint thinners, tires, old appliances, corrosive or flammable fluids, garbage and used car oil. Mortgage companies want these kinds of materials removed from vacant homes to avoid potential liability and to protect the value of the property from things like mold and pest infestations.

So how exactly do you handle hazardous materials on a property? For most materials, clean up is rather simple. Things like food and garbage just need to go to the dump and most communities have drop off points for these kinds of household substances. As for special items or circumstances, there are a few options. If you need to dispose of tires, you can look into tire dealers who will accept old tires. Some transfer stations will take them with the garbage in limited, or unlimited amounts. Facilities will usually accept larger amounts of things like oil-based paint if you notify them in advance.  Water based paints are technically not hazardous, but most transfer stations will not take them in large quantities unless you first dry them out. One way to do that is with Kitty litter. If an appliance contains a hazardous material such as Freon or contaminated contents, it may require special handling and disposal. If the Freon can be removed, standard HAZMAT disposal requirements will be followed for Freon only. If the appliance contains a hazardous element such as Freon, standard HAZMAT disposal requirements will be followed.

The most important thing to remember when it comes to removing hazardous materials, is taking quality photos. In order to provide bids of removing hazardous materials, or any other debris, you must be able to take good photos. We provide a list of needed photos to our property preservation vendors.

For VRM Property Preservation Vendors in-scope activities include items accepted as general debris at the landfill. Out-of-scope HAZMAT removal can be submitted for out of scope reimbursement only when the items are not accepted by the land fill, require a special dump fee, and/or the removal requires a trip to a separate dumpsite. All bids to remove hazardous materials must be reviewed and approved by the VRM preservation specialist or Asset Manager prior to removal.

More info on our HAZMAT protocols can be found in our vendor guide provided to all our vendors. Want to become part of our vendor network? Click here for the online application.