Heads-up for landlords planning to renovate

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On April 22, 2010, the Lead-Safe Renovation Rule took effect in Wisconsin. Both residential and commercial rental property owners who plan to renovate their properties need to comply with the requirements of the Lead-Safe Renovation Rule, including using a certified Lead-Safe Renovator and obtaining certification as a Lead-Safe Company.

Even the most minor renovations require a certified Lead-Safe Renovator. The new rule regulates renovation, repair and painting activities performed for compensation in housing and child-occupied facilities built prior to 1978. The purpose of the rule is to protect occupants from being exposed to lead-based paint hazards during and after renovation, repair, and painting activities that disturb painted surfaces. As of April 22, every regulated project requires at least one certified Lead-Safe Renovator to be in charge of compliance with the regulation, including the training of uncertified workers and final cleaning verification.

Wisconsin contractors, property owners, and owners of childcare facilities need to be aware of the rule’s certification requirements. Any renovation project on a building that could potentially contain lead-based paint will require a closer look to determine how Wisconsin’s Lead-Safe Renovation Rule applies. Ignoring the new certification requirement could be costly. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services may impose a daily fine of between $100 and $1,000 for each violation, and each day of continued violation constitutes a separate offense.

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