Lead poisoning is a serious disease caused by swallowing lead or breathing lead dust. Although adults are susceptible to lead poisoning, children are the most vulnerable. It can damage the brain, kidneys, and nervous system. Low levels can cause learning and behavioral problems, while very high levels can cause retardation, convulsions and coma.
Currently Maida Services does NOT perform Lead Paint Testing. As former licensed professionals, the information below is provided as a courtesy.
Paint manufacturers were allowed to put lead in paint until the year 1968. However, they were allowed to sell off their products into the 1970's. Therefore, Massachusetts and New Hampshire extended the cut-off date for houses which could have lead paint to 1978. If the house you are purchasing was built prior to 1978, it could contain lead paint.
Children are most often poisoned by lead paint in older homes. The most common sources of lead poisoning are lead dust and lead chips from lead painted areas. Lead dust can come from opening and closing windows, normal wear and tear of painted areas, and repairing areas with lead paint. Lead dust settles to the floor and gets on children's hands and toys. It enters their bodies when they put their hands or toys into their mouths. They can also ingest lead by eating, chewing, or sucking on things with lead paint such as windowsills, railings, or other painted surfaces.
The Massachusetts Lead Law requires the removal or covering, or interim control, of lead hazards in homes built before 1978 where any children under the age of 6 live. Lead paint hazards include loose lead paint and lead paint on windows and other surfaces accessible to children. Owners are responsible for complying with the law. This includes owners of rental property as well as owners living in their own single family homes.
There are two ways an owner comply with the lead law:
The first option is: Have all lead hazards removed or covered. The owner must first hire a licensed lead inspector who will test the home for lead and record all lead hazards.
- Under Massachusetts law, high-risk deleading must be done by a licensed deleader.
- Some low-risk deleading can be done by the homeowner. Anyone planning to do low-risk deleading must first have an
inspection and meet the training requirements. Follow the links on the left to get more information on the training, as well as
information on funding available to pay for deleading.
The second option is: Have only urgent lead hazards corrected while controlling remaining hazards. This temporary method is called interim control. The owner must first hire a licensed risk assessor who will explain what work needs to be done for interim control. After the work is approved, the owner will receive a Letter of Interim Control. Owners then have up to two years before they must have the remaining lead hazards removed or covered and receive a Letter of Full Compliance.
A rental property owner can be held legally responsible for a lead poisoned child if he/she is lead poisoned by lead hazards where the child lives. An owner cannot avoid liability by asking tenants to sign an agreement that they accept the presence of lead paint. Complying with the Lead Law is the best protection an owner has from liability. Also, no owner cannot evict or refuse to rent to a family with children under six if there is lead paint in the home. Discrimination is against the law and carries penalties.
9 Bartlet Street #261
Andover, MA 01810
PO Box 12
Hampstead, NH 03841