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Owners of Older Properties - Lead Paint and Asbestos Information

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By : marco benavides    99 or more times read
Asbestos-containing materials and lead-based paint can lead to very serious effects, illnesses and even death in human beings. However, if they are properly handled, any risks can be greatly reduced, but there should always be an expert to conduct any and all remediation.

You must understand that any abatement of these materials is controlled by local, state and federal regulations, and that you cannot just take it upon yourself to correct any problems that you may perceive. You can always contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention for advice, especially if you own an older property because these experts estimate that there are 24 million homes in the United States that contain these materials, without taking commercial properties into account.

Your older home or property may come with the added risk of asbestos and/or lead-based paint, especially if your structure was built before 1978 when the government banned lead-based paint. If your structure was built after 1978, it may still have been painted with lead based paint because the builder may have purchased paint that was produced before the ban.

The great difficulty is in determining what is an actual asbestos hazard and what is not because most laypeople simply cannot tell. If you have a concern about your building or dwelling, you should get expert assessment from a professional in asbestos remediation who will be trained and licensed in the removal of hazardous materials.

There are some very well-documented, well-known risks from both asbestos-materials and lead-based paint exposure. Children's physical and mental development can be stunted by exposure to these materials. In adults, it can result in nerve and reproductive damage, irritability, and poor muscle coordination. Asbestos, on the other, has the long-term risk of abdominal and chest cancers, as well as pulmonary disease.

In both cases, the presence of these materials may not call for their immediate removal, which can be quite expensive. For example, lead based paint may become more dangerous if it is removed because it is when the particles are airborne that they can be ingested by humans. In addition, if paint is peeling or cracked, children can eat it, and it can lead to the damage already described.

Asbestos can become very dangerous if it is somehow damaged and if it is releasing particles into the air which are then breathed by human beings. If you are doing any type of renovation, remodeling, or reconstruction, you need to post notices in common areas and make your tenants aware of the risks that may be involved.

Whatever you do, when you are doing any kind of construction work, make sure that the work is done by licensed professionals so that the risk can be minimized. You do not want to over-expose your tenants to these minute particles which can potentially harm them.

If you are worried about legal ramifications, you could potentially shift your liability to the tenant by providing disclosure. Oftentimes, disclosure will be enough for you to overcome your liability where these materials are concerned, but you should weigh the potential harm before you actually decide what you need to do.
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