Remodeling a home can be a great experience for certain people. After all, it is an opportunity to remake a part of your house – whether a single room, an entire floor, or the whole home – exactly as you want it to be. While most people want to love their homes, many see a lot of room for improvement.
Remodeling can be a way to finally get rid of that wall you’ve always wanted to remove, to change the flooring you no longer want to tolerate, or to touch up a fading paint job. However, there are some pitfalls to the remodeling process.
To begin, it can be expensive. Many people do not realize how large the final tab is going to be and find themselves surprised at how much they spent over the course of the remodeling process. Remodeling can also be frustrating, as unexpected obstacles often occur, which can slow down the remodeling process and make it more expensive. Yet, what many people do not realize is that remodeling can also be dangerous.
Below are a few of the most common dangers in the home remodeling process. Asbestos is a material used in construction that is dangerous when inhaled. Most asbestos exposure now occurs in the workplace, but it is also commonly found in homes built before the late 1970’s. In places like shipyards, auto repair shops, and public buildings, asbestos is regularly present. Even a small amount of asbestos exposure can be lethal, so it is important to inspect your home for it before remodeling.
If undisturbed, asbestos is not dangerous. If you need to remove it, hire a professional. Asbestos can be found in many different places in a home, and different types of asbestos are used in different places. It may be in the form of asbestos cement sheet eaves lining, wall lining near appliances, or in the back panel of your sink. If you suspect asbestos is in your house, hire a professional. Exposure to asbestos can cause mesothelioma, a lethal disease.
Mesothelioma is a respiratory disease, which attacks the chest wall’s linings and the lungs. Law firms like Cooney & Conway can help you take action to protect your legal rights in the event that you are exposed to asbestos. Lead Paint Lead paint is universally recognized as dangerous. In 1991, the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said that lead was the “number one environmental threat to the health of the children in the United States.”
Lead exposure can happen through the air, soil, dust, and drinking water, but old lead-based paint is still the leading source. If your home was built prior to 1960, it probably has heavily leaded paint. Homes as recent as 1978 have also been found to have lead paint on the walls, both indoors and outdoors.
If you believe your home may have lead based paint on the walls, now is the time to take care of the problem, especially if it is cracking or crumbling. Be sure to keep any areas in which children play clean and free of dust. Regularly wipe down surfaces, walls and windows, and instruct children to wash their hands before they eat and sleep. If the lead paint is left undisturbed it is not dangerous.
If you want to remove it, hire a professional instead of trying to handle the problem yourself. Inquire with local health or housing officials for suggestions on laboratories that can test your home for lead. Loud Noised not underrate the damage that can be done to your ears by loud noise in close proximity. If you are doing the remodeling work yourself, then be sure to wear ear protection.
If you have hired professionals to do the work, then try to stay out of the house when the power tools are in use. If you have children, limit their exposure to the noise. About the author: Jessica McNeil is a Legal Assistant to James R. Hopkinson, one of the skilled attorneys at the leading Chicago law firm of Cooney & Conway.