3 Environmental Challenges in Older Building Renovations

If you’re a tradesman working on older buildings, there are unique challenges that you’ll likely face in applying your trade that you should be educated on and ready to take on should you encounter them. You might find that locally there are laws that require you to have had specific training so that you can even take on jobs under certain conditions. Having these specialist skills means you’re in a position to get work that others might not be certified for, so expanding your knowledge and skill set can lead to extra income.

Let’s spend some time looking at three of the bigger environmental challenges you might face in older building renovations.

Lead Paint

In 1978, the use of lead paint was banned, but years before that, the use of lead paint rapidly declined. The problem is, however, that much of this paint might still exist, either having been painted over and left on the wall under countless other coats of paint, or environmental hazards contaminated by deteriorating lead paint. Dust and soil can become contaminated in this way, and it presents a real health risk. Being certified to work on houses built before 1978 is a requirement and proper training should be sought before taking on these renovation jobs.


Perhaps one of the most well-publicized and documented hazardous materials used in construction before it was banned for the serious health risks it poses is asbestos. Many cases of cancer have been linked to the disturbance of asbestos, which is a naturally occurring mineral. Having even the tiniest fiber in your lungs can cause a very aggressive form of cancer called mesothelioma, and therefore knowing how to properly remove and dispose of asbestos is incredibly important. It can not only be beneficial for your own health but for the health of those that might be using the property you’re working on. Correctly observing health and safety practices for these jobs is a legal requirement, so attending the proper training is absolutely crucial.


Mold is not always harmful but in some cases, it can be a dangerous and unwelcome presence in any household. The appearance or color of mold growth isn’t a reliable indicator of its potential harm. Mold produces microscopic spores that become airborne and can live in almost any environment, often even if actual mold cannot. Mold is a common cause of allergies, breathing problems in people with asthma, and many other conditions – some much worse. Properly cleaning and removing mold in the household is important and learning the proper skills to do so is an essential skill in any contractor’s toolbelt. 

Training centers like ZOTA Professional can ensure you’re properly certified to deal with these environmental considerations, amongst others.

Keeping yourself skilled in many different areas is incredibly important to success as a tradesman. Being certified to assist in the management, removal, and renovation of areas that may have exposure to lead paint, asbestos and mold are great skills to have. Staying up to date and certified doesn’t need to be a lengthy or expensive process.

Clay Miller
the authorClay Miller
I am the creator/writer of and I'm an advocate for oceans, beaches, state parks. I enjoy all things outdoors (e.g. running, golf, gardening, hiking, etc.) I am a graduate of the University of Kentucky (Go Wildcats!!). I'm also a huge fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers. I was born and raised in the beautiful state of Kentucky.

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