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So, what’s required?

Well Drillers

A bacterial and/or chemical water test is not required when a well is drilled. A well report for either a dug or drilled well is filled by the time of installation, and certain physical characteristics of the water is noted: “Colour”, “Taste”, “Odour” and “Other” for drilled wells; “Colour”, “Hardness” and “Odour” for dug wells.

Banks

Water analysis requirements vary by company, and type of financing. For mortgages, a water analysis is not legally required, but companies will usually request it. Some require only the water be potable, while others require a chemical analysis when purchasing property insurance, or when the loan is for new home construction on a well.


Real Estate Transactions

Investigative Feature

Sellers are not required to test their water before selling their home. They fill out a disclosure form, where they disclose the type of well, whether they’re aware of any problems with the water’s taste, appearance or odour. They also disclose the date of the last test they did, but do not need to say what type of test, nor results of said test. They also disclose whether treatment or filtration systems are in place.

A buyer can include a test as part of a conditional offer on a house, but even if a test is asked for, and arsenic found to be excessive, the seller isn’t obligated to remediate the situation. They would be obligated to inform the buyer.