What should I do about lead-based paint in my rental property? [Real NEastate]

Q: I am a Northeast Philly landlord. I have several duplexes and homes in the area. I have concerns about the new Lead-Based Paint Law for landlords and how I apply it. No doubt I will be passing any costs down to the tenant, which is not my fault, but in what other way does this new law limit me?

A: Lead-based paint poses serious health risks and is expected to have been used in all propertied build in Philadelphia prior to 1978, before lead paint was deemed harmful and banned. Before Dec. 21, 2012, requirements for home sellers and landlords included disclosing this fact and providing buyers and renters with the EPA brochure, “Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home.”

In Philadelphia, the lead-based paint disclosure has been amended to include a provision protecting renters from lead-based paint. The new amendment requires Philadelphia landlords to obtain certification that the property is lead-free or lead-safe prior to the properties rented to new families children age 6 or younger.

This law does not limit landlords; it just needs them to go a step further to protect the health of the families who live in their properties. If you are worried about the cost of the certifications, you may want to become a PA licensed inspector/risk assessor or an EPA certified lead dust sampling technician.

For complete information and helpful links, go to the City of Philadelphia’s Public Health website.

Stacey McCarthy is a real estate agent with the McCarthy Group of Keller Williams. Her Real NEastate column appears every Wednesday on NEastPhilly.com. See others hereRead other NEast Philly columns here.


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