Buying an Old Home or Remodeled Old Home!

When buying a remodeled old home like from 1800, 1930 to 1978. One of the main concerns when remodeling an old home would be the removing of old materials. For Example:  asbestos and lead based paint as well you have old electrical wiring, A/C unit and plumbing. Thomasville, GA has it’s share of old homes.

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Removing any of these materials are not cheap or easy and needs to be done right by professionals. If the home does not have any harmful materials the homeowner or the contractor should have documentation of no finding from the proper agencies performing the testing, then you are good to go, but if it was done without the assistance of the proper agencies then the removal of these materials was done wrong and the employees working on this home were exposed to these harmful fibers and so would be the buyers of these homes. Realtors selling these types of homes should have all property disclosure documents uploaded to the listing in order to provide the proper information that the home is safe and eliminating the possibility of exposure for any visitors. If no documents are provided as to the outcome of the testing or removal of the old materials, consumers would need to perform the proper testing of the indoor air and possibly the exterior grounds to ensure that it is a safe home.  If documentation does not exists of proper agencies of no problems with the home RUN!!!!.
Throughout the United States, asbestos is a concern Asbestos:

Asbestos is a mineral fiber. It can be positively identified only with a special type of microscope. There are several types of asbestos fibers. In the past, asbestos was added to a variety of products to strengthen them and to provide heat insulation and fire resistance.

How Can Asbestos Affect My Health? From studies of people who were exposed to asbestos in factories and shipyards, we know that breathing high levels of asbestos fibers can lead to an increased risk of:

  • lung cancer;
  • mesothelioma, a cancer of the lining of the chest and the abdominal cavity; and
  • asbestosis, in which the lungs become scarred with fibrous tissue.

The risk of lung cancer and mesothelioma increases with the number of fibers inhaled. The risk of lung cancer from inhaling asbestos fibers is also greater if you smoke. People who get asbestosis have usually been exposed to high levels of asbestos for a long time. The symptoms of these diseases do not usually appear until about 20 to 30 years after the first exposure to asbestos.

Most people exposed to small amounts of asbestos, as we all are in our daily lives, do not develop these health problems. However, if disturbed, asbestos material may release asbestos fibers, which can be inhaled into the lungs. The fibers can remain there for a long time, increasing the risk of disease. Asbestos material that would crumble easily if handled, or that has been sawed, scraped, or sanded into a powder, is more likely to create a health hazard.

http://www.epa.gov/asbestos/pubs/ashome.html

Lead-Based Paint:

Old lead-based paint is the most significant source of lead exposure in the U.S. today. Most homes built before 1960 contain heavily leaded paint. Some homes built as recently as 1978 may also contain lead paint. This paint could be on window frames, walls, the outside of homes, or other surfaces. Harmful exposures to lead can be created when lead-based paint is improperly removed from surfaces by dry scraping, sanding, or open-flame burning. High concentrations of airborne lead particles in homes can also result from lead dust from outdoor sources, including contaminated soil tracked inside, and use of lead in certain indoor activities such as soldering and stained-glass making.

Health Effects of Exposure to Lead:

Lead affects practically all systems within the body. At high levels it can cause convulsions, coma, and even death. Lower levels of lead can adversely affect the brain, central nervous system, blood cells, and kidneys.

The effects of lead exposure on fetuses and young children can be severe. They include delays in physical and mental development, lower IQ levels, shortened attention spans, and increased behavioral problems. Fetuses, infants, and children are more vulnerable to lead exposure than adults since lead is more easily absorbed into growing bodies, and the tissues of small children are more sensitive to the damaging effects of lead. Children may have higher exposures since they are more likely to get lead dust on their hands and then put their fingers or other lead-contaminated objects into their mouths.

http://www.epa.gov/iaq/homes/hip-lead.html

Examples of Where Asbestos Hazards May Be Found In The Home:

  • Some roofing and siding shingles are made of asbestos cement.
  • Houses built between 1930 and 1950 may have asbestos as insulation.

Where Can I Find Asbestos And When Can It Be A Problem? Most products made today do not contain asbestos. Those few products made which still contain asbestos that could be inhaled are required to be labeled as such. However, until the 1970s, many types of building products and insulation materials used in homes contained asbestos. Common products that might have contained asbestos in the past, and conditions which may release fibers, include:

  • STEAM PIPES, BOILERS, and FURNACE DUCTS insulated with an asbestos blanket or asbestos paper tape. These materials may release asbestos fibers if damaged, repaired, or removed improperly.
  • RESILIENT FLOOR TILES (vinyl asbestos, asphalt, and rubber), the backing on VINYL SHEET FLOORING, and ADHESIVES used for installing floor tile. Sanding tiles can release fibers. So may scraping or sanding the backing of sheet flooring during removal.
  • CEMENT SHEET, MILLBOARD, and PAPER used as insulation around furnaces and woodburning stoves. Repairing or removing appliances may release asbestos fibers. So may cutting, tearing, sanding, drilling or sawing insulation.
  • DOOR GASKETS in furnaces, wood stoves, and coal stoves. Worn seals can release asbestos fibers during use.
  • SOUNDPROOFING OR DECORATIVE MATERIAL sprayed on walls and ceilings. Loose, crumbly, or water-damaged material may release fibers. So will sanding, drilling or scraping the material.
  • PATCHING AND JOINT COMPOUNDS for walls and ceilings, and TEXTURED PAINTS. Sanding, scraping, or drilling these surfaces may release asbestos.
  • ASBESTOS CEMENT ROOFING, SHINGLES, and SIDING. These products are not likely to release asbestos fibers unless sawed, drilled or cut.

Sray Foam Insulation:

Spray foam insulation in the attic area will help any home by reducing the heat in an attic space and at the same time help the A/C unit from working as hard. This will not give you an energy efficient home. If the home is not started with the concept of building it energy efficient from the ground up and many steps taken to achieve a proper rating by a third party it is not an energy efficient home. And there is no such thing as energy efficient spray foam! Spray foam are available as a closed cell or open cell but not available as an energy efficient spray foam.
Thomasville, GA has it’s share of old homes and new homes built to bare and below minimum code.

Documentation of proper removal from proper agency, even if the agency did not find any Lead, Mold, or Asbestos it should be documentation if not DO NOT BUY that old home.
http://greenhomeguide.com/askapro/question/energy-efficient-homes – NO, YOU CAN NOT Thomasville, GA. REALTORS. This would be faults advertising.

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