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A few years ago we hired a home inspector after having lived in our house for eight or so years. He seemed pretty good - found a bunch of stuff our original inspector missed, and we followed many of his recommendations to correct things.

He was also a certified or licensed radon assessor (I don't remember the actual title) and tested our house by leaving a device in a place where we actually live for a couple of days. I got the impression it was a geiger counter kind of thing, which he took away and plugged into a computer to generate a printed report. He said it was much more accurate than those testers you buy at Home Depot and send in somewhere after you expose them. I have no way of knowing if that's true or if he was just selling us a more expensive radon test.

I also don't know if such folks are licensed in other states. Oregon is known as a license-happy place -- for example, it's the only state where you have to pass a state board exam if you want to get paid to prepare taxes.

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