What is a Lead-Based Paint Disclosure and why should you care? If you’re buying a home, you NEED these tips…
Hey everyone, welcome back! I’m Lindsay, with the Wise Move AZ Team at Realty ONE Group. If you want to stay up to date on all things Anthem and Real Estate then you’re going to want to subscribe to our YouTube Channel. Pro Tip: You’re also going to want to hit that little bell icon, while you’re there, so that you’re the first to know when our new videos are posted every single Thursday!
As your Anthem, Arizona REALTOR® I have worked with a number of families to ensure a smooth purchase of their home. A lot of work goes into getting under contract to purchase a home and one of the key pieces is the Lead-Based Paint Disclosure. Now, if you watched our video last week you may already have an idea of what to expect when it comes to the Lead Based Paint Disclosure. Last week we focused on tips for Sellers, and this week we are going to focus on tips for Buyers, so stick around to find out if this potential health hazard impacts you! OR if you’re selling, click to watch last week’s video. Either way, we’ve got you covered.
Oh, and before I forget, at the end of this post I will give you access to the Lead-Based Paint Disclosure and other important documents, so stick with me!
First things first, what is Lead Based Paint?
This might shock you but lead based paint is paint that contains lead. Go figure! The federal definition of lead-based paint is paint that contains 0.5% lead or 5,000 milligrams of lead per kilogram of paint chips. Congress passed the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992, also known as Title X, to protect families from exposure to lead from paint, dust, and soil. Section 1018 of this law directed HUD and the Environmental Protection Agency to require the disclosure of known information on lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before the sale or lease of most housing built before 1978.
Why is Lead Based Paint a Problem?
Lead based paint is a problem because exposure to lead can cause serious health problems.
Exposure in Children
Exposure to lead tends to be more problematic for children. At low levels of exposure, in children, it can cause:
- Nervous system and kidney damage
- Learning disabilities, attention-deficit disorder, and decreased intelligence
- Speech, language, and behavior problems
- Poor muscle coordination
- Decreased muscle and bone growth
- Hearing damage
High levels of exposure in children can be even more severe, including:
- and in some cases, death
Exposure in Adults
In adults, lead exposure can cause:
- Harm to a developing fetus
- Increased chance of high blood pressure during pregnancy
- Fertility problems (in men and women)
- High blood pressure
- Digestive problems
- Nerve disorders
- Memory and concentration problems
- Muscle and joint pain
Pretty scary, right?
Long story short, lead is a hazard to our health and if it’s in a home you’re hoping to buy, you need to make sure that you are doing everything in your power to make sure your home is safe and healthy.
When is the Lead Based Paint Disclosure Required?
In Arizona, a lead-based paint disclosure is required when a home was constructed prior to 1978 OR if it was built after 1978 and the Seller knows or has reason to believe that Lead-Based Paint may be present in the home. Reviewing and understanding the Sellers’ Disclosures are a very important part of buying a home, and to help with this, we created a whole video on the importance of disclosures. If you are interested in watching that video, simply click here.
So, what do you need to do?
The obligation to disclose the presence or possible presence of lead-based paint falls on the Seller and their agent. That being said, if the home you are hoping to buy requires a Lead-Based Paint Disclosure there is some additional work you’re going to want to do. Here are 5 things we strongly recommend:
This is easily done. The Seller will provide you with an informational pamphlet that is approved by the EPA and a copy of the Lead-Based Paint disclosure. You need to read both of these thoroughly and ensure you understand them. I’ll provide you with a copy of both of these at the end of this post, so stick with me. In addition to reading these documents, you’ll want to do some of your own research.
If the home you are hoping to buy requires a lead—based paint disclosure you will want to consider getting 2 different tests. These are a Lead-Based Paint Inspection and a Risk Assessment.
Lead Based Paint Inspection: The Lead-Based Paint Inspection tells you if the home has lead-based paint and where it is located.
Risk Assessment: The Risk Assessment will tell you if the home currently has any lead hazards from lead in paint, dust, or soil. It will also tell you what actions need to be taken to address the hazards. Note that you have 10 days after contract acceptance, unless otherwise negotiated, to get these tests done so you’ll want to make it a priority. Your REALTOR® will be able to recommend companies to conduct these tests and can even help with scheduling them.
If the tests come back positive for the presence of lead-based paint or lead hazards, we encourage you to get quotes on how much it will cost to remedy this. You’ll want to ensure you are getting quotes for Lead-Safe Certified renovators or contractors. Again, your REALTOR® can help with this piece. You want to be completely informed when it comes to understanding the risks and costs associated with lead base paint.
Work with the Seller to Come to an Agreement
As you conduct your inspections, including any lead-based paint testing, you may develop a list of items you disapprove of. In Arizona, you can give the Seller the opportunity to correct the items you disapprove of. This is dealt with in the BINSR process. We go into way more detail on the BINSR Process in another video. If you would like to watch that, you can click here. But for the purposes of this post, know that, with the help of your REALTOR® you can work with the Seller to come to an agreement about who will remedy any lead hazards in the home. Most importantly, if you can’t reach an agreement, you are not obligated to proceed with the purchase.
If the home you want to purchase contains lead-based paint or other lead hazards, don’t panic! Your REALTOR® is there to help you make the best decision for you and your family. Know that lead hazards can be remedied by Lead-Safe Certified renovators. These companies are certified by the EPA, and if the thought of buying a home that has lead hazards is just too much for you to bear, you are not required to proceed with the purchase.
If you follow all of these steps, you’ll be in great shape when it comes to buying your home!
So there you have it! What do you think? Do you feel prepared to tackle the home buying process where a lead-based paint disclosure is required? Let me know in the form below.
Lead Based Paint Disclosure & EPA Pamphlet
If you’d like to view a copy of the Lead-Based Paint Disclosure and an approved EPA pamphlet with even more educational materials, simply click here.
See YOU, next Thursday!