Property Transfers

Overview 

When a commercial or residential property is sold in Saint Joseph County, the Department of Health requires properties with an onsite septic system and potable water well to be inspected and tested. The purpose of the septic inspection and water test is to disclose the condition of the septic system and the quality of drinking water to the buyer. The septic inspection must be completed by a contractor or inspector registered with the Department of Health, and the water test must be done by a laboratory registered with the Department of Health.

The septic inspection and water test must be provided to the buyer at least 3 days prior to closing. If for any reason the septic system and water test cannot be completed prior to closing, a deferment application will need to be submitted to the Department of Health for review and approval.

Demolition of Structures 

For properties that are purchased with structures to be demolished, please review Demolition Requirements. In addition to any required demolition permits, onsite septic systems and water wells are required to be abandoned with a permit issued by the Department of Health prior to obtaining a demolition permit.