Approximately one third of all homes in Australia contain asbestos products.
If your house was built before 1990, it is likely that it would have some asbestos-containing materials. Find out more about what asbestos is and how exposure occurs.
Health risks of asbestos exposure can include life-threatening illnesses. Before renovating your home you should always carry out precautions to make sure that you keep yourself, your family and your surrounding neighbours safe.
Being able to identify and understand where you could find asbestos will give you a better idea of where asbestos could be found in your home.
However, the only way to be certain that a material or product contains asbestos is to undertake the process of asbestos sampling and testing. If in doubt, treat the material as if it contains asbestos until it has been confirmed otherwise.
If you are unsure whether or not your house contains asbestos, you should consider getting an asbestos inspection. An asbestos survey will tell you if asbestos is present and if any further action is needed to manage the risk of the asbestos.
It is highly recommended that you get an asbestos survey before hiring any tradespeople and that you provide any tradespeople with a copy of the asbestos survey report before they carry out work on your home so they are aware of any potential risks.
To find a licensed asbestos assessor, you can call or visit the website of the work health and safety regulator in your state or territory.
DIY asbestos removal is not recommended and in some states is not legal. In the ACT, all asbestos removal work must be carried out by a licensed asbestos removalist.
In all other states and territories, a non-licensed person is allowed to remove non-friable asbestos as long as the area is no bigger than 10m². Ensure you read more information on DIY removal if you are a DIY home renovator thinking about removing non-friable asbestos yourself.
If you know your home contains asbestos and you want to get it removed professionally, you can call or visit the website of the work health and safety regulator in your state or territory to find a licensed asbestos removalist.