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What A Basic Home Inspection Doesn't Cover: 3 Toxins To Test For

by Neil Craig

If you are ready to purchase a home and you want to get a home inspection, make sure you get an inspection that tests for dangerous toxins in the home. If you are purchasing a home that was constructed in the mid-20th century, you could have toxins like lead, radon and asbestos in the living space.

You don't want to live in a house that is potentially dangerous for your health. A regular home inspection wouldn't test for these three things, but it's worth the extra costs to have the property tested for these things.


Does the house have lead paint throughout the walls and in the plaster? If so, a lead abatement professional can come and remove all of the lead from the walls safely, and then you will want to have new drywall hung in place of the old materials. Lead toxicity can cause a variety of health problems for adults and children, and for families who are trying to conceive.


Radon is a naturally occurring toxin that develops when soil breaks down around the house. The house needs to be tested, and if there is a positive result and there is radon in the house you need to get a mitigation system. This will help to prevent further exposure to the gas, which is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States.


Asbestos is a fine mineral fiber that many manufacturers put in construction materials throughout the mid-20th century. The fiber made the materials stronger and fire-resistant, but it is also dangerous if inhaled. If these materials get wet, catch fire or get moved around, the toxin is airborne and can be a threat. You'll want to have an asbestos removal or encapsulation company come to take care of all the asbestos issues in the space before you move in.

These are just a few of the things you have to worry about when you are purchasing a new home, and it's important to know what is inside the house before you buy it. You can try to work with the seller on having some of these issues addressed before you move into the property, so you don't have to pay to have all of the problems fixed on your own. If you are getting a home inspection make sure you tell the professionals you want to have the house tested for radon, asbestos and lead. Contact a company like Colfax Corporation for more information.