Lead Paint Warning

We're in the middle of a house search. The one we are in is ideal. Just tiny for 10 of us.

Thus we receive occasional e-mails from realtors. I received one yesterday that was titled "Homes with Lead Paint." It was a helpful reminder to homebuyers to beware of lead paint. It was stunning how similar the issue of lead paint is to the issue of mold.

The dangers of lead paint were discussed as early as 1910. A hearing was conducted in the House of Representatives. At that time Marion E. Rhodes testified that, “the most eminent scientists and doctors of Great Britain…reached the conclusion that white lead is poison…the small particles that result from chalking…when taken by inhalation into the lungs, are absorbed and become poison to the system.” The bill was dismissed.

In 1921 the president of the National Lead Company stated in a letter to the head of Harvard Medical School that "manufacturers, as a result of fifty to sixty years experience, agree that lead is a poison when it enters the stomach of man."

Also in 1921, the Third International Labor Conference of the League of Nations held in Geneva banned lead-based paints from homes. The United States did not attend the Conference and did not agree to the resolution.

In fact, 56 years went by before the United States prohibited the use of lead paints. Not until 1977!

Thus when I received the e-mail yesterday and read the contents, I imagined what might happen in 20 years IF we wake up to this issue. This is the exact email I received with my changes in bold.

All sellers with homes built prior to 2015 are required to fill out a mold disclosure form and provide you, the buyer, with a mold educational booklet in any sale. Mold is highly toxic and is found in and around our homes. Mold may cause a range of health effects, from behavioral problems and learning disabilities, to seizures and death. Children 6 years old and under are most at risk, because their bodies are growing quickly. If in doubt, have the house tested and evaluated at a local laboratory.