- Buying a vacant lot?
- Building on an existing piece of property?
- Purchasing a future house in a brand new development?
No matter which case, you’ll have a lot of decisions to make when it comes to constructing the perfect home.
From paint colors or light fixtures, to lot coverage or square footage, new construction can pose a ton of questions – and a number of challenges. And these will dictate how your residence functions for years to come.
But one of the most important and yet overlooked questions when it comes to brand new homes or lot purchases is how you will manage your wastewater.
Will you hook up to an existing municipal sewer system, or will you need to install your own septic system?
If you have the option to do either, which is the most cost effective, and trouble-free way to go?
To answer this question, property owners will need to consider the following key factors. These will guide them in the right direction when it comes to determining wastewater management for a brand new property. From location to costs, homeowners can use a wealth of data at their fingertips to figure out the best way to move forward in building their new home.
Septic or Sewer? Three Key Factors to Help You Decide
Your property’s location will have a big impact on deciding if you will depend on a community sewer system or a private septic system.
Is your new home is in an urban location, part of a townhouse or other multi-family development, or on a very small lot? Chances are you will hook up to an existing sewer system that services many properties instead of just one.
However, if your property is in a rural location, or a small town that doesn’t have a municipal sewer system, then you will likely need to install an individual septic system.
If you’re unsure how your location plays a role in how you will dispose of your wastewater, talk to your builder, realtor, or local government to pinpoint the exact answer.
If you haven’t purchased your property yet and are still deciding which lot to buy, (with an option between sewer and septic), you’ll first want to consider potential costs.
The big difference between septic systems and sewer systems when it comes to cost is how much you’ll pay, and when.
Generally, there is a cost to hook up to a sewer system, and then the long-term cost to utilize the sewer system in the years to come. This is because a third party tends to your wastewater management. And since it’s your city or county government who oversees it, the cost will probably rise in the future.
With a brand new septic system, you’ll incur a larger cost for installation, but your long-term maintenance costs will be much lower. Your installation costs can also be mitigated by starting with a modern septic tank that is easy to transport and install. Check out Rotoplas’ new line of septic tanks which also feature a years-long warranty.
Essentially, over time, a septic system is often a less expensive way to go.
3. Maintenance and Issues
The final aspect that homeowners will need to determine when deciding between sewer and septic is long-term maintenance and the potential for emergency issues.
Sewer systems are generally reliable. But they have to be to accommodate so many homes at once. Yet some cities and areas even have deteriorating systems.
For example, major cities such as Philadelphia and Detroit have made headlines in recent years, as their sewer systems were corroded and needed a ton of maintenance to function properly. This is especially true if you live in an area with lots of new developments, which put added strain on the sewer system.
In addition, areas affected by natural disasters, such as hurricanes or earthquakes, can suffer problems with the municipal system.
You will have to pay for all costs of a septic system yourself. But generally speaking, your costs will be minimal provided that you treat it properly – especially if you are starting with a brand new system. This is because septic systems can last for decades without major repairs. Just start with a well-designed septic tank, and avoid common missteps like putting larger objects or materials down the drain.
Prospective homeowners who are deciding between septic and sewer may worry that the answer isn’t always as straightforward as it seems. Just search for a little education and give a lot of attention to present and future concerns. This way when it comes to your new home, wastewater disposal is a decision you can tackle with confidence and ease.