The Environmental Protection Agency’s new lead paint law took effect on April 22, 2010. The new law requires that contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb painted surfaces in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 be certified and follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination. Contractors will also be required to provide homeowners and tenants with a copy of the EPA’s lead hazard information pamphlet Renovate Right: Important Lead Hazard Information for Families, Child Care Providers, and Schools (PDF). Contractors performing work without the certification face penalties of $37,500 per day. If you are a homeowner performing work in your own home, the EPA rule does not cover your project.
What does this mean for owners of pre-1978 homes? The good news: a healthier home for you, your family and people that perform renovations to your home. The bad news: an increased cost for contractors that some expect will be up to 20% which will likely be passed onto homeowners.
Reminder: Existing Federal law requires that property owners, property managers and real estate agents leasing or selling housing built before 1978 provide an EPA-approved lead hazard information pamphlet called Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home and a statement disclosing any known lead-based paint to tenants and buyers before they enter into leases or purchase and sales agreements. Property owners, property managers and real estate agents share equal responsibility for providing lead disclosure information and must retain copies of records regarding lead disclosures for three years.