What is your experience/opinion on homes with lead based paint?

2 Replies

So far in my brief real estate experience I've encountered very polarizing viewpoints on lead paint. 

From a landlord's perspective, I've been told "Don't worry about it. As long as you don't eat the walls you'll be fine. That disclosure is just to let you know not to let your toddlers eat the paint chips off the window frames."

However, the general essence of the environmental portion of the real estate salesperson's class was more like "If you live in a house with lead paint, you will die. Your children will get brain cancer. Between the paint on the walls, and even the paint on the outside of the house ending up in your garden, you and your children will all get cancer and die.". 

Obviously there is quite an abundance of pre-1978 homes in the marketplace and as we all know, they're all virtually guaranteed to have lead based paint. 

So what is the real truth here? Just how dangerous is lead based paint? Would you (or do you currently) personally live in a home with lead based paint? Would you live there with small children? Just how bad does the situation have to be before it requires a professional to mitigate the situation, and just how involved (and expensive) will that be?

All experiences and opinions valued and welcome!

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Around here, every house is pre-1978, and quite likely to have lead paint somewhere (or everywhere).

You need to disclose that it "might" have it, and the buyer/tenant needs to sign that they "read" the EPA handbook about lead paint hazards.

I haven't met anyone yet who cares. Granted, my houses I've sold/rented are newly painted, clean, and don't have chipping paint, so it's really not an issue.

I'd personally be much more concerned about lead pipes used in the city's water distribution. (Which is a whole other post) :)

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