Remodelers Only Have Less Than Two Weeks to Prepare for Lead Rule
Remodelers and other home contractors have only a week-and-a-half to prepare before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s new regulation, Lead: Renovation, Repair and Painting, goes into effect on April 22.
The lead paint rule requires that remodelers and contractors complete eight hours of training and become certified, and that they follow specific work and cleaning practices as well as provide consumer education and complete detailed records when working on homes, day care facilities or schools built before 1978 where young children or pregnant women are present.
Under the new rule, renovations that disturb painted surfaces in these buildings must be performed by a firm certified to work with lead-based paint. The firm also must have a certified renovator on staff. Such renovation work may include modification, repair, sanding and scraping and removing or replacing windows, doors and similar components.
While the lead paint rule currently applies to work in older homes inhabited by small children or pregnant women, the EPA is seeking to amend the regulation so that it would apply to all homes built before 1978.
NAHB has repeatedly asked the EPA to delay enacting the rule on April 22 because of a shortage of training programs available in many parts of the country that would preclude many remodelers and contractors from meet the training requirements and obtaining certification.
The EPA continues to assert that enough remodelers will be able to achieve certification by the deadline.
NAHB also has expressed concern with the EPA that expanding the rule to include all homes built before 1978 — not just those inhabited by small children and pregnant women — would greatly increase costs to home owners without providing significant health benefits.
The EPA has a search tool for finding approved trainers as well as an online calendar from the National Center for Healthy Housing. NAHB also suggests that remodelers contact their local home builders’ association about training opportunities.
NAHB has online information about the rule, links for finding training, sample language to use in remodeling contracts and more at www.nahb.org/leadpaint. The information is available for members only.