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Lead Hazard Evaluation/Assessment

The Lead Safe Housing Rule requires some form of evaluation or assessment for any dwelling unit that receives HUD funding. The specific type of evaluation or assessment depends on the nature of the housing program or activity being conducted or the amount of assistance provided. For more information on which methods are required for different housing activities, see the Lead Safe Housing Requirements Summary Table and the individual topics: Rehabilitation, TBRA, and Homebuyer.

The following describes the methods of evaluation/assessment that are required under the Lead Safe Housing Rule. (For more information on presumption, see Option to Presume.)

  • Methods Required for CPD Programs. The following evaluation and assessment methods are used with CPD-funded activities:
    • Visual assessment. A visual assessment for deteriorated paint consists of a visual search for cracking, scaling, peeling, or chipping paint as well as visible dust, debris and paint chips. Because a visual assessment is not considered a method of lead hazard evaluation, there is no requirement for a Notice of Lead Hazard Evaluation associated with this procedure.
    • Paint testing. Paint testing entails testing painted surfaces to determine if they contain lead-based paint using methods such as an XRF analyzer or laboratory analysis. A certified paint inspector or a certified risk assessor must perform paint testing.
    • Risk assessment. A risk assessment is a comprehensive investigation of a dwelling to identify lead-based paint hazards. It includes paint testing, dust and soil sampling, and a visual evaluation. A certified risk assessor must perform risk assessment. Risk assessment results are summarized in a written report with recommendations for action.
  • Other Methods. There are other methods of evaluation/assessment, but these methods are not required with CPD-funded activities.
    • Paint inspection. A paint inspection is a surface-by-surface investigation to determine the presence of lead-based paint. Because the inspection evaluates all painted surfaces, it is more comprehensive than paint testing. A certified paint inspector must perform paint inspections. Paint inspections are not required for CPD funded activities.
    • Lead hazard screen. A lead hazard screen is similar to a risk assessment, but is designed for properties in good condition. A screen requires fewer samples than a risk assessment, but uses more stringent evaluation criteria. If the results of a screen indicate that lead-based paint hazards are or may be present, a full risk assessment must be conducted. A certified risk assessor must conduct a lead hazard screen. A lead hazard screen is permitted in CPD-funded projects as an alternative to a risk assessment.