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5 min read Nov 23, 2022

Lead-Based Paint Inspection: What Makes it so Important?

Lead-based Inspection

Lead-based paint is a significant issue. Lead inspections and risk assessments are vital first steps towards better-informed decisions about managing lead-based paint and lead hazards.

Lead abatement is a process that removes lead-based paint permanently. Lead abatement may require action by a state or municipal authority and may include special procedures not commonly used by home contractors.

EPA requires licenses and work procedures for those who eliminate pre-1978 target housing and children’s facilities.

What is a Home Inspection?

A home inspection is a non-invasive visual examination of a property. Home inspections reveal significant defects in the property that an untrained eye can miss. Inspections paint the real picture of the true condition of the property.

A home inspector will assess your house and provide valuable insights into the property’s interior and exterior, electrical systems, and more. Specialty home inspections, like radon, mold, and asbestos, are also done. One such inspection is the lead-based inspection.

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What is Lead-Based Paint Inspection?

Lead-based paint inspections detect whether or not lead-based paint is present. It is extremely helpful in establishing the presence of lead-based paint before acquiring, renting, or remodeling a property and identifying possible sources of lead exposure at any time. 

Lead-based paint risk assessments are crucial in determining the sources of current exposure and developing potential solutions.

Why Should I get Lead-Based Inspection?

  • Symptoms of lead toxicity have occurred in many children. The most prevalent cause of lead exposure in the house is decaying lead-based paint and the dust that results from it.
  • You reside in a house constructed before 1978 that has or will have small children. 
  • You are planning to rebuild or do anything else that will disturb lead-based paint or produce lead-based paint dust and chips that can harm you and your family.
  • You are either renting or purchasing a property. When acquiring a house, federal law authorizes the buyer to perform tests to detect the presence of lead-based paint or lead-based paint dangers. 
  • It is essential when you have (or want to have) small children. Before you buy a house, learn about your legal rights.
  • You are concerned about lead exposure to your body, family, pets, or guests.

Is Lead-Based Paint Inspection Necessary?

Inspection and testing for lead-based paint often occur as part of due diligence in multifamily and commercial real estate purchases and before building destruction or repair.

Buildings built before 1978 are in danger of possessing lead-based paint. It is imperative to seek an LBP inspection when peeling or damaged paint occurs in facilities used by children. Children are the most vulnerable to lead poisoning via ingestion. 

Many lenders need this as part of their due diligence, including Housing and Urban Development finance and, in certain situations, SBA financing.

Because renovation and demolition operations may disrupt lead-based paint or create lead-based paint dust, lead-based paint sampling is a good idea before these activities.

If My Home has Lead-Based Paint, What Should I do?

Lead exposure is a significant matter. A trained risk assessor can help you analyze the report and decide if abatement (totally removing lead risks) or preventative maintenance (controlling possible lead hazards) is a better option for you and your family. 

Hire a professional and registered abatement contractor if you wish to perform abatement work. You must maintain lead-based paint regularly, and if you plan to disturb it, you must hire only lead-safe certified contractors.

A qualified lead-based paint professional will know how to work safely and possess certification documentation.

Types of Lead-Based Inspection

While some common forms of inspections and testing are listed below, lead-based paint testing is often adapted to fit the specific needs of the building.

Lead-Based Paint Inspection

XRF testing removes the requirement for laboratory analysis, offers direct reading results on-site, and eliminates the risk of lead dust formation.

Paint chip testing provides OSHA-acceptable data and validates aberrant XRF values. Swab testing for suspected lead dust is available. The process is usually necessary for HUD inspections of buildings built before 1960.

Lead Risk Assessment 

Lead Risk Assessment examines potential lead risks such as lead-based paint, lead dust, lead in water, and lead in soil.

Lead Clearance Inspection

All projects involving demolition (as defined by the EPA) must have clearance performed by a qualified risk assessor or a certified lead-based paint inspector. This process occurs after lead hazard control or paint-disturbing renovations or maintenance have been completed to ensure that no lead-based paint hazards remain.

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How Much Does a Lead-Based Inspection Cost?

The price of Lead-based inspections varies depending on the home and circumstances. Typically, Lead-based inspections cost $250 to $700. Nevertheless, a home Lead-based inspection should ensure your home’s integrity. It is easier to implement a solution when you detect a problem early.

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