Lead-Based Paint: What You Should Know
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, lead poisoning is the number one environmental illness of children and is caused primarily by lead-based paint in older homes. In children, lead can cause nervous system and kidney damage, learning disabilities and behavioral problems. Adults can develop difficulties during pregnancy, reproductive problems and high blood pressure.
Federal law requires that individuals receive certain information before renting or buying a pre-1978 housing. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (www.epa.gov/lead/):
- LANDLORDS have to disclose known information on lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before leases take effect. Leases must include a disclosure form about lead-based paint.
- SELLERS have to disclose known information on lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before selling a house. Sales contracts must include a disclosure form about lead-based paint. Buyers have up to 10 days to check for lead hazards.
Three Things to Remember about Lead-Based Paint:
- Intact lead-based paint that is in good condition generally is usually NOT a hazard.
- Peeling, chipping or cracking lead-based paint is a HAZARD and is potentially harmful.
- Lead DUST generated from friction sources such as windows, door frames, and stairs is a particularly significant source of lead exposure.