Federal law requires Sellers of older homes (those built before 1978) to disclose whether they have any information about the existence of lead-based paint. That is why Buyers are generally given a “Lead Based Paint Disclosure” from the Seller or the Seller’s agent.
To learn more about the dangers of lead-based paint, the Environmental Protection Agency has published a pamphlet available here:
Lead based paint can be harmful to young children, infants and fetuses. It can enter your body in multiple ways. Each family should therefore be aware of its danger and should take it seriously. Whether or not you decide to get your own lead-based inspector is up to you and may be very fact specific to your situation.
In our practice, we do not see many Buyers get lead-based inspections, even for homes built prior to 1978. This may be because they are unaware of the existence of lead-based paint, or because they plan to repaint the home. Whether or not repainting protects against lead-based paint should be investigated prior to making the decision on an inspection.