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2011-01-10 02:41:07

Renovate Right - Know the Law for EPA Lead Safe Practices

Did you know about the Environmental Protection Agency's Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair, and Painting Program?

painterAll contractors who perform renovations in homes and child-occupied facilities built before 1978, need to be operating in compliance with the new lead-based paint safety requirements which became fully effective in April 2010.

Home improvement contractors, HVAC, plumbers, electricians, painters and maintenance workers are now REQUIRED to be trained in the use of lead-safe practices

According to the EPA's publication, Small Entity Compliance Guide to Renovate Right EPA’s Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair, and Painting Program, a handbook for contractors, property managers and maintenance personnel working in homes and child-occupied facilities built before 1978:

"Firms are required to be certified, their employees must be trained (either as a certified renovator or on-the-job by a certified renovator) in use of lead-safe work practices, and lead-safe work practices that minimize occupants’ exposure to lead hazards must be followed...Renovation is broadly defined as any activity that disturbs painted surfaces and includes most repair, remodeling, and maintenance activities, including window replacement."

Dust from lead paint if inhaled or ingested can cause irreversible damage to children and adults.  Click here to learn more about the harmful effects of lead poisoning. A contractor without certification who is caught not following the approved practices can face potential lawsuits and tens of thousands of dollars in fines.  If you're a contractor who would like to become lead-safe certified, click here to find out how. 

Federal law allows the EPA to authorize states to administer their own program in lieu of the federal lead program.   Other requirements that are different from or more stringent than the federal requirements may apply in your state, especially if you live in Wisconsin, Iowa, North Carolina, Mississippi, Kansas, Rhode Island, Utah, Oregon, Massachusetts, or Alabama

For more information on the rules that apply in your state, visit the EPA Lead Safe Practices Website or contact the National Lead Information Center at 1-800-424-LEAD (5323). Click here to find a lead-safe certified contractor near you.   


Karen Bernetti is an Author, Speaker, Realtor® and the Co-Creator  of Ready2Sellin30Days® an innovative, interactive, multi-media educational program designed to teach do-it-yourself homeowners EVERYTHING they need to know about preparing a home for sale during tough economic times! Visit to learn more. 

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