Hello, everyone.

I bought an 85-year-old house in Western Wisconsin about 2 years ago. The basement has major moisture issues. And because former owners painted the walls and floor - a gross mint green, I kid you not - I am not sure how to proceed. The paint could be lead-based.

There are holes and cracks in the poured concrete walls (one horizontal crack runs the length of an entire wall), so water seeps in that way. Water also pools on the floor in a few spots during heavy rains or when the water table is high. [Before I purchased the house I had a foundation contractor come out who said the crack probably doesn't pose a structural threat.]

I have no sump pump, but I do have rain gutters with downspouts that extend. The grading isn't wonderful, but the house is on a bit of an elevation, so it could be a lot worse.

I was thinking about applying hydraulic cement to the walls where the cracks and holes are, and a sealant as well, as Tom Silva demonstrates in a TOH video... But should I be concerned about the layers of cracked paint? Can I simply put sealant, etc. on top of the paint layers - or must I hire pros to remove the paint first?

Thanks! I'm so at my wits end that I am contacting basement waterproofers to get estimates. But it sure would be nice if I didn't have to cope with "sticker shock" and then take out a loan to deal with this problem.