The HUD Office of Multifamily Housing Programs has released guidance for radon testing during the COVID-19 emergency. Released on April 2, the guidance is effective immediately and reads:
For MF FHA-insured lending, in situations where interior access to the subject property is limited, and the asbestos surveys, lead-based paint hazard evaluations, and/or radon testing cannot be completed prior to application submittal, MFH Production will allow lenders to submit applications without these reports. However, MFH Production will require these reports before issuing a Firm Commitment. For new construction and substantial rehabilitation properties where asbestos clearance sampling, lead clearance examinations, or radon testing takes place after construction, all mitigation reports, including follow-up sampling, examinations, or testing, must be submitted to HUD staff at the final completion inspection, before occupancy.
The guidance provides flexibility for managing radon testing in situations where interior access to the subject property is limited. Because radon testing requires separate mobilizations for device placement and retrieval, and typically includes all ground contact locations (and a percentage of upper floor locations) at the property, being able to submit applications without the radon report helps ensure transactions don’t become stalled. However, HUD does require testing to be completed before issuing the Firm Commitment.
Radon mitigation, when required, is not specifically addressed in the guidance. In most instances, completion of the pilot test needed to determine the firm non-critical repair budget for closing will not be feasible. When applicable, we anticipate HUD will permit flexibility in providing a ‘worst-case’ budget for mitigation to ensure transactions can close.
As always, the trusted professionals at Protect Environmental stand ready to assist you in determining the most efficient and economical approach for managing radon and chemical vapor intrusion. During the COVID-19 emergency, you can rely on our expertise to provide flexible options to ensure your transactions continue to move forward – follow our LinkedIn portal for timely updates and information while this situation continues to evolve. For LEAN transactions, we anticipate guidance from ORCF to be released soon for radon testing in residential care facilities during the COVID-19 emergency.