Do old houses exude a sense of nostalgia that new properties with no history simply can’t? They most certainly do, especially if you happen to find a particularly sturdy house, built with care and rich with memories. Unfortunately, the downside is that they may exude more than just that old time feel and if you are not aware of all the possible dangers, some of them could even turn out to be deadly.
Lead In The Paint: Chances Of Heavy Metal Poisoning
Lead use in any kind of paint is currently banned in the United States, but it wasn’t banned before 1978. Therefore, if the house was built before 1978 or even around that timeline, get it professionally checked out.
Lead poisoning is particularly damaging for children as it inhibits development and may even be fatal for them. Over time, heavy metal poisoning from lead can also lead to cognitive impairment, memory loss, weight loss, digestive issues, psychological problems, seizures, loss of hearing, severe organ damage, and various other dangerous, life-threatening symptoms in adults too.
Lead Pipes: Toxin In Your Drinking Water
The older generations really loved their lead as the metal’s malleability allowed for manufacturing plumbing pipes with relative ease. As one may imagine, this means that there are centuries of pipelines made out of lead, and if you have an old home, chances are that there is lead in your water too!
Get the water tested for lead and other potential toxins to know whether or not you will need to invest in a serious plumbing project, before thinking about moving into the property with your family.
Asbestos: It’s The Deadliest Thing One Can Find In An Old House
This is not to say that one danger is better than the other, but out of nearly every possible danger that one may be afraid of finding in their newly acquired old property, asbestos is, by far, the worst of them all.
More than 90,000 people die every year from asbestos poisoning, at a time when everyone already knows about mesothelioma and asbestosis, both of which are painful, deadly diseases with no cure.
Technically, asbestos could be everywhere as it was during the mid-1900s a very popular material in construction, but the danger of asbestos in garages continues to be the most prevalent cause for concern in older properties. Get the entire house, and the garage, in particular, checked out for the presence of asbestos. If they find it, you will need experts trained in asbestos removal specifically, to get rid of the deadly microfibers.
It goes without saying that in addition to these somewhat hidden dangers of an old house, you should also be looking for the more obvious ones, such as cracked floorboards, broken stairs, damaged roofs, water damage, mold formation, etc.
An old house can either be a dream or a nightmare, depending on how well you managed to get it inspected before buying it. This is the main reason why people hire house inspection agencies to get everything checked out for them in advance.