What you need to know about the EPA Lead Paint Law

In April 2010, the new law for the EPA Lead Paint Law is coming into effect. This law addresses the amount of lead paint and its safe removal in all homes built prior to 1978.  More than 2/3rds of homes built before 1960 have lead-based paints  (1978 was the year lead-based paint was banned.)

If you have a home built prior to 1978 and are planning to remodel your home after April 2010, here’s what you need to know:

  • All professional contractors are required by law to be certified and trained in protective lead-safe removal procedures when the remodeling project disturbs more than 6 square feet of interior lead-based paint or 20 square feet of exterior lead-based paint.
  • This law will also include painters and window contractors as well.
  • Contractors (and sub-contractors) must post signs, protect the area so that the dust doesn’t keep spreading, and conduct thorough cleaning methods to ensure that the clean-up is effective.

We have been following this law since early last year and, unfortunately, the amount of information and unawareness of the EPA to the cost ramifications of this law has been frustratingly scant up to this point. However, failure to follow the new regulations will not be an excuse. If your contractor has no idea of this law, it may be already too late for them to be certified in time for an April remodel.

Yes, it will add extra costs to your project, depending on your scope.  If you have pre-1978 home you’re planning to remodel, there’s still time before the April deadline. In the meantime, here are some links to keep you informed:

EPA website

A contractor site breaks down the law