Imagine, you find the house of your dreams. It’s an outdated house with a lot of potential. To be sure, you ask for an independent technical inspection. After you receive the results, there is a suspicion that the roof contains asbestos. 

This situation may sound weird because asbestos is not something to worry about in the country you grew up. Or you panic because asbestos is already forbidden in your home country. What is your reaction?

Asbestos, what is it?

Asbestos is a natural mineral and contains fibres. The material is strong, insulating and fire-safe. It has different forms. The most used asbestos has a white or light grey colour. But it can be brown and blue. It’s used in more than 3000 applications in the Netherlands. Mainly in buildings. 

Why is asbestos harmful?

As long as asbestos fibres stick in the place where they should be, there is no problem. When you inhale the fibres of asbestos, you can have a problem in the long term. It can cause lung cancer, as the fibres will stick into your lungs. 

How is asbestos used in houses?

From 1945 till 1993 asbestos was used in many houses in the Netherlands. Chimney pipes, sewage systems, vinyl flooring, roofing, sealant, window sills, etc. Nowadays 3500 products with asbestos are known which are used in the past.

What to do when you know there is asbestos in your house?

First step: research by a professional

When there is a suspicion that there is asbestos in your house, ask a professional for an asbestos inventory. During this inventory, samples will be taken and sent to a laboratory. Sometimes, small demolishing should take place, to ensure what kind of material is used. A report is written with all the conclusions. 

Only specialized companies do this kind of inventory. Prices start from €400.

Then you know if there is asbestos used in your house. What to do? This answer isn’t easy. It depends. Let me give you a few examples.

Example 1: Corrugated roof on your shed or house

If you have a corrugated roof of your shed which contains asbestos, be aware that in a few years, it will be forbidden. In this case, you need to remove it. In some cases, you are allowed to do it yourself. However, it is much safer to professionally remove the roof. In both cases, there are very strict rules which you need to be aware of.

Example 2: renovating your old bathroom

You are renovating your bathroom, open the wall, and you will find asbestos sewage pipes. What to do? First: don’t touch the asbestos. You can close the wall forever and think about other options for your renovation. If this is not an option: contact a professional. Removing yourself is mostly not an option in this case. 

Example 3: Insulating your roof

You want to insulate your roof. First, you check how the roof is built. In between the roof tiles and wood, you discover a layer of asbestos. What to do? First call for an asbestos inventory. 

In this case, you have three options. The first one is you can insulate the roof from the inside without touching the asbestos. The second is to renew the roof and pay a professional to remove the asbestos. Or you can decide not to insulate at all.

Professional removal of asbestos

Only companies who are certified can remove asbestos for you. You can find the register here.

Removing asbestos is expensive. A lot of precautions are taken before the asbestos is removed. Like clothing, and respiratory protection. Also, waste disposal is expensive.

What if you want to remove the asbestos yourself?

You are only allowed to remove asbestos in a few cases. In this case, I advise visiting this website. You will find the rules applicable to your situation. Be aware that the rules can change every year. 


Houses built before 1993 can contain asbestos. If that is the case, investigate if it is a problem. If the asbestos is fixed and in good condition, it is normally not a problem. But you are not allowed to edit the material. Only if you want to renovate that part of your house, it can cause problems.

Asbestos is a problem as the condition is deteriorating. In most cases, only certified companies can remove the material. Removing is costly.

Do you plan to renovate your house? Don’t know if the offers you received are fair? Or just don’t know where to begin? Just send a message. And, we will plan a personal introductory meeting for free. 

Take off to a successful house renovation by downloading the Renovation Guide for free.

- Start off successfully by turning your Dutch house into a dream home.

- Stop overthinking the renovation steps and make the best possible renovation start.

- Save your valuable time by using this renovation guide so that you can enjoy your renovated house soon. 

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