In doing a visual inspection of a property, how do you look for lead paint? How is it removed? What is the cost?

Howdy Mtfultz:

Here is a little that I know on the subject. Most lead based paint can just be covered with primer and then painted with latex paint for ony a few more dollars than normal. It is only the sanding of the paint and removal of peeling and flaking paint that could cause problems as this should be done be professionals wearing masks amd disposing of the waste properly. Most little small repairs are ignored. If the entire house needs repair then you had better get some help.

The age of the property is the best way to check for lead base paint. I believe it was 1978 when lead was no longer used in paint but I could be in error.

Ted, as usual, is right on the money.

If you REALLY need to know if there is lead paint, it can be lab-tested.

Generally speaking, if the house is older than 1978, an assumption is made that there is lead-based paint. Unless the paint is blistered, peeling, or chipping this is not a problem and you just give the buyer/renter a copy of the EPA Pamphlet and you should be OK. If there is old, disturbed paint, it will have to be remediated before an appriaser/inspector should give it a “passing grade”. here in Louisiana where I am, the appraisers are pretty ‘hard-over’ on this. The remediation process is not torturous (like asbestos) but the chips and flakes have to be handled and disposed of properly and breathing apparatus/eye protection needs to be worn.

Here is a link to the EPA pamphlet (thanx to Tim Randle!):


I believe the sell a testing kit at HD and other hardware stores. Most homes older homes do have lead paint.

Yes they do sell a lead paint testing kit. It looks like a pool chlorine test kit. You should be able to purchase one at a paint store.