Should homebuyers be wary of radon? Asbestos? Lead paint? Power lines? "The evidence induces skepticism," writes Cassandra Chrones Moore in Haunted Housing. "Credulity and fear have created an atmosphere of hysteria inimical to reasoned argument, diverting resources, burdening the taxpayer, frightening the homebuyer, and putting at risk the long-cherished goal of many Americans to own their own home."
Moore outlines the government-created misperceptions of risk affecting buyers and sellers of homes, tenants and landlords, brokers and agents. "The Environmental Protection Agency, using public service announcements and media campaigns, has successfully projected messages of real danger to homebuyers," Moore says. "Current research, however, indicates that the specters of asbestos and lead belong to the past; the supposed link between radon and lung cancer has been disproved; and electromagnetic fields pose a mythical hazard."
"A risk-free society is not of this world," Moore writes. "The EPA, often encouraged by Congress, continues to act as though all hazards can be eliminated. Everyone who owns a home or who wants to be a homeowner has reason to object to the EPA’s pursuit of the impossible."