Skip to Content

What You Need to Know About Lead-Based Paint Exposure

Chipped Off Lead Paint Laying on the FloorBecause you are a property owner and landlord in Clearwater, it is your responsibility to keep your rental property safe and habitable. Regular maintenance and repairs are what most property owners conduct. There are some things you need to add to your property maintenance list if your rental house was built before 1978. For instance, many older homes had their interior walls and ceilings painted with lead-based paint. Lead-based paint can be severely dangerous to your tenants. This is why, as much as possible, landlords should consider limiting lead-based paint exposure. Next, we’re going to share a few of the secret dangers of lead-based paint in a rental home, as well as what property owners can do to help their tenants avoid exposure.

The Hidden Dangers of Lead Paint

Lead-based paint was the usual material used to create buildings before 1978. It is not necessarily dangerous, having lead paint on the walls, unless the paint is disturbed, chips, or crumbles into dust. Lead paint, as it ages, becomes toxic to people (especially children) who are exposed to it. You can typically observe this placed around windows and window sills, railings, banisters, porches, doors, and door frames. For older individuals, consuming lead paint flakes or inhaling the dust can result in a host of health problems, including headaches, body aches, digestive issues, memory loss, and even kidney damage. Lead paint causes learning disabilities, hearing problems, nerve damage, and bone marrow problems. It is especially harmful to children. Those who are unfortunate enough to find themselves exposed to lead-based paint can have problematic and lifelong health issues.

Landlord Responsibilities

The number one priority, as a landlord, should be ensuring the health and safety of your tenants. Extending beyond that are the risks of lead paint. In fact, in most places, if you deliberately rent a property with lead-based paint without sharing that information with your tenants, you could be liable for any related costs of treatment and other damages, such as pain and suffering. Due to this, it is important to understand if your rental property has lead-based paint, inside or out, and take any appropriate steps from there.

If you are unsure if your rental has lead-based paint or not, you should have it tested and inspected. Depending on the property’s age and location, it may not be adequate to trust the disclosures said to you when you purchased the property. Then, you may be legally required to inform and explain to your tenants what lead-based paint is and the dangers of exposure if lead is detected.

Avoiding Tenant Exposure

One of the main things you can do to eliminate any chance of exposure is to have the lead paint removed entirely. This option, while expensive, is the usual permanent long-term solution to the issue. Do not attempt to get rid of lead-based paint on your own; this is a job best left to the professionals.

If removal and replacement are not possible, you may also be able to encapsulate or enclose your rental’s exterior to avoid any exposure to lead paint. Encapsulation is the most feasible option between the two. It involves applying a special coating over the lead paint, and this creates a watertight seal. The other option, enclosure, involves covering the existing surface with a new one. This is just like putting up new drywall over an old wall or covering window sills with cladding. While both alternatives would work temporarily, if the coating ever fades away or the enclosed surface is removed, the threat of exposure would be great. You would also still need to give disclosures to your tenant about the lead paint, in accordance with the laws in your area.


Becoming an owner of rental properties can come with a few obstacles. We, at Real Property Management Empire, recognize that. You need the guidance and resources of Clearwater property management experts to help you when you encounter problems. Contact us online to learn more.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

The Neighborly Done Right Promise

The Neighborly Done Right Promise ® delivered by Real Property Management, a proud Neighborly company

When it comes to finding the right property manager for your investment property, you want to know that they stand behind their work and get the job done right – the first time. At Real Property Management we have the expertise, technology, and systems to manage your property the right way. We work hard to optimize your return on investment while preserving your asset and giving you peace of mind. Our highly trained and skilled team works hard so you can be sure your property's management will be Done Right.

Canada excluded. Services performed by independently owned and operated franchises.

See Full Details