So, Andy of Sold By Sheets just sold you your dream “fixer upper” home and you’re ready to start with the renovation. Be aware that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has enacted a new regulation effective April 22, 2010 – the Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule (RRP). The RRP requires contractors working in residential homes or apartments built prior to 1978 to follow specific practices to minimize lead hazards to the occupants. Why pre-1978 you ask? Lead was prohibited as a paint or varnish additive in this year.
As you probably know, lead, even in small quantities can impose serious health risks to children, including permanent neurological damage.
The RRP now requires contractors intending to work in pre-1978 homes to register their company and participate in an 8-hour training course with an accredited trainer. The course focuses on safely containing lead in the home as it is being disturbed. Further, the RRP requires contractors to make occupants aware of lead hazards during renovations and further requires contractors to give occupants an EPA brochure titled “Renovate Right,” which contains facts about lead and lead safety, along with prohibited practices such as dry sanding and scraping of paint, power sanding without a HEPA vacuum attached, open flame paint removal, or use of a heat gun above 1100 degrees F.
If you have any doubts about your contractor’s lead safety practices, call the National Lead Information Center at 1-800-424-LEAD. You can also find additional information at EPA.gov/lead.
Michael J. Adler
Adler Law LLC
The Algonquin Building
225 N. Delaware Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204