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Saturday, January 2, 2016

Septic: The Skinny on the Stinky


When a home is sold in Thurston County, it's customary for the seller to have the septic tank pumped prior to closing.  Specifically, if the transaction is financed by the buyer, the septic tank is required to be pumped 12 months or less from the closing date.  This expense can range between $400-$1200, depending on the pumping company and the size of the tank/amount of waster.

Septic pumpers I have worked with and recommend:

Enviro Tech Septic Solutions LLC*
12627 183rd Ave SW
Rochester, WA 98579
(360) 273-3840

Economy Septic & Construction Inc.*
P O Box 637
Rochester, WA 98579
(360) 459-2759 

*Certified to inspect intermittent sand filters in Thurston County 

Further, Thurston County’s sewage system regulations (Article IV) have a requirement for the evaluation of Septic System when the property they serve is sold or transferred. The requirements were put in place to help inventory septic systems, and identify and assure the timely repair of failing septic systems.  (adapted from the Thurston County Environmental Health Department)

Time of Transfer FAQ's
We have tried to answer some of the common questions regarding this program and the requirements - Frequently Asked Questions. We will be updating this document with new information periodically, please check back.

Is an Operational Certificate renewed during a property sale? 
A septic system must be inspected and all septic tank(s) pumped when property ownership changes, or it must have been done within one year of the sale. An inspection and pump out done at the time of transfer can be used to renew the operational certificate for the new owner if the system is functioning properly and permits are in order.

Application and Supporting Documents
Part of this process requires an Industry Professional, either a certified Pumper, Installer, or Monitoring Specialist, to inspect the system. The following documents must be submitted to our office either by mail or in-person along with the fee. Click here for the fee schedule (Near the Bottom of Page 6, Section C-10) [PDF]

Application [PDF] (can complete on computer, saved and printed)
Sketch of Property [PDF]

Where is Information Submitted? 

By Mail 
Thurston County Environmental Health
2000 Lakeridge Drive SW
Olympia WA 98502 

In-Person Permit Assistance Center (PAC)
2000 Lakeridge Drive SW Building 1,
2nd Floor 

Hours of Operation: 
Monday thru Friday; 8:00 AM to 12:30 PM 
Drop-Off Box Available after 12:30 PM and is located to the left of the PAC doors. 

 At this time we are unable to accept applications, fees, and sketch of property documents electronically. We hope to be able to offer this feature in the future.

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