4 Signs Your Building May Have Major Health Hazards

All buildings have secrets. Some are about the people who once lived in them. Just as many, if not more, are about the materials used to construct them. While many buildings are perfectly safe inside and outside, many others, especially older ones, may contain things that are bad for the current residents’ health. To keep your tenants and yourself safe, you should thoroughly inspect your building. This can identify any issues. Here are four signs your building may have major health hazards.

Air Quality

You can’t tell the difference between good air and bad air by sight. But eventually, your respiratory system will know the difference. Poor indoor air quality can occur due to any number of things. The building might simply have poor ventilation and require the installation of a system that brings good air in and kicks the bad air out. More serious issues include mold and mildew growth. If there are parts of your building that are unnecessarily damp, mold and mildew can grow and interfere with healthy breathing. Dust, allergens, volatile organic compounds in paint, and other things can also ruin the air. Installing an HVAC system with an air purifier is a good best practice.


If the building is from before 1980, chances are that there’s asbestos somewhere inside. In the past, builders used asbestos as an insulating material and for fireproofing certain sections of the building. They also put it in framing joints and under tiles. When disturbed, asbestos can fly into the air as dust, which can enter the lungs and lead to respiratory diseases like lung cancer, mesothelioma, and more. Have the building inspected for asbestos. If it has any, seek professional help to remove or remediate the asbestos.

Lead Paint

The US banned lead paint in 1978. Too often, young children ate and otherwise ingested the paint. The paint also released dust that could enter the body, causing brain and nerve damage, developmental issues, and more. Amateurs should never scrape or heat lead paint. Hire a lead abatement professional to remove the paint and collect any remaining dust before it can cause health issues or even death.

Vermin and Pests

Rodents, bugs, and other critters aren’t just icky. They can cause disease and leave droppings and urine everywhere. They can nest in the walls and other parts of the building, causing physical damage and releasing dander and hair. That’s bad news for the immunocompromised, asthmatic, allergic, and others. Some pests can even cause physical damage to the structure, leading to collapsed walls and floors and worse. Look for damage and listen for gnawing, skittering, and other creepy sounds. Call an exterminator to handle unwanted creatures.

Those are just four signs your building may have major health hazards. Look, listen, and even smell for them, then have professionals handle them to protect your residents and investment.

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Written by Logan Voss

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