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Lead Paint Rule Drives Up Remodeling $

From the Colorado Springs Gazette:

Lead paint rule will raise remodeling costs, contractors say

April 21, 2010

Hiring a contractor to remodel a kitchen, finish a basement or install new windows could get a lot more expensive for thousands of homeowners on the west side, around the Patty Jewett Golf Course and in many other older neighborhoods in the Pikes Peak region.

A new Environmental Protection Agency rule that takes effect Thursday — the 40th anniversary of the nation’s first Earth Day — requires contractors, remodelers and other professionals to employ a series of additional safeguards when they work in homes built before 1978 and that have tested positive for lead paint.

The EPA’s rule is intended to protect children 6 and under because of their susceptibility to the health hazards of lead, which can be stirred up in the form of dust and paint chips during sanding, demolition and other construction work. Lead paint, which the EPA says can lead to brain damage, central nervous system problems, learning disabilities and behavioral problems, was banned in 1978…

Gary Haney, who owns Bestview Windows Siding and Doors in Colorado Springs, says he’ll have to spend more to buy plastic sheeting, protective clothing and other items his installers will use when working in older homes with lead paint. The extra time needed to prepare a site, clean up afterward and dispose of materials will mean his three installers won’t be able to do as much work in a day as before, Haney said.

To cover his material and labor costs, and without adding to his profit, Haney said he’ll have to charge his customers an extra $95 to $125 per window — costs that could add up to hundreds or thousands of dollars more, depending on the size of a home.

“Anybody who owns property, this is going to be a big deal for them,” said Haney, who started his company a dozen years ago and who’s worked in home improvement since 1976.

Gerding Construction owner John Gerding, who’s worked in construction since 1984, said his prices might increase as much as 50 percent, although he can’t say for sure until he begins employing the new EPA-required safety measures.

At a home where he was working this week in northern Colorado Springs, Gerding said he expected to take two days hanging doors and installing shelves. If he were doing the work in a pre-1978 home, it would take twice as long under the new EPA rule, he said.

“Everytime [sic] you shoot your nail gun, the dust off the floor is flying in the air,” Gerding said.

“It will hurt both the contractor and the homeowner,” he said of the new rule. “The homeowner is going to balk at the (higher) prices. … It’s going to create a problem that I don’t think we need right now, without a whole lot of jobs out there because of the economy.”

Contractors and their employees have been required to obtain training in EPA safety measures for working with lead paint in older homes. But some contractors haven’t bothered, and Haney, Gerding and others worry they’ll lose out when they bid on jobs and consumers opt to try and save money by hiring non-qualified companies.

“He’s (a property owner) going to hire the fly-by-night guy with cousins who will knock it out on a weekend,” Haney said.

Reichmuth said fines for contractors who work in pre-1978 homes without EPA certification can be as high as $37,500 per incident per day. The EPA expects to field complaints from certified contractors who are trying to police their own industry and protect themselves, she said.

She acknowledged that contractors and consumers likely will pay more to comply with the new rule.

But health care, special education and other costs associated with children poisoned by lead paint are staggering for communities over time, she said.

“The cost of working in a lead-safe manner,” she said, “pales in comparison to the cost on individuals, families and society.”

This is going to be the asbestos-removal racket all over again. Only worse, because far more houses have lead paint than had asbestos.

And just think what a boon it will be for the housing market and building contractors?

But of course the $37,500 fine, per incident per day, has the bureaucrats salivating.

Still, why doesn’t the EPA stick to what it does best — like regulating our carbon dioxide emissions?

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, April 22nd, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

9 Responses to “Lead Paint Rule Drives Up Remodeling $”

  1. canary says:

    EPA new law going into affect April 22, 2010 will destroy value of 38 million homes in Oklahoma, making them to costly to fix at such expense lower costing homes, and also keep homes from being easy to sell. And to Micheal Moore thought the Detroit neighborhoods being empty, was a crime. Give the govt some time. This is why I’m holding on to my old car. Next year Obama can pass a law that car repair men can’t work on cars that don’t put new gas tanks and gimmicks on their car first. The EPA care about our children doesn’t make since, as they do absolutely nothing about childrens olds schools that aren’t safe, or down right dangerous. There is more to the EPA pushing this. What is Obama up to now.

    I just saw on I believe CBS news EPA worker explaining this. Caught the end but it was focusing on replacing windows in an old house, and the cost, and this article said most window contractors will go out of business.
    The EPA speaker gave the same figure as this article of 35,700 thousand a day penalty.

    (excerpts from this article found on this site with link below).

    Pact Prosperity: New EPA Lead Paint Laws Effect Remodeling Projects

    The rules for renovating pre-1978 homes are changing and failure to comply can carry stiff penalties. My friend Ron Deviney of R & J Properties, LLC in Volusia County Florida shared it and I want to share it with our readers. If you’re a rehabber, flipper, or landlord this may affect your business.

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has new lead paint laws going into effect on April 22, 2010. The new lead paint laws require any renovation work performed on houses built before 1978 to be performed by a certified contractor.

    Obviously his new law is causing some serious moans and groans from both home owners and contractors. …

    Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Law

    The new lead paint laws that goes into effect on April 22 involves training and certification of remodelers, safe work-site practices, verification and record keeping. It’s very important to understand that the new law pertains to projects on any house built before 1978 with a few exceptions as follows:

    * The home or child occupied facility was built after 1978
    ….* If the house or components test lead free by a Certified Risk Assessor, Lead Inspector, or Certified Renovator.

    The other obvious answer is an increased cost for contractors to adhere to the new rules which ultimately means an increased cost to you.

    Over the last few months I’ve heard several small contractors say they will steer clear of and avoid older home renovations. A significant amount of small replacement window contractors will most likely go out of business and stop providing inexpensive window replacement services.

    If you hire a contractor to do a renovation in your home that was built prior to 1978 be sure you hire a certified contractor. You should ask to see your contractors RRP certification prior to hiring them.

    Contractors performing work without the certification face penalties of $37,500 per day!

    New Law Will Take Time To Work Effectively

    With over 38 million homes containing lead paint in the US no one can argue the importance of good lead paint laws. However,….
    We certainly hope the EPA works quickly to fill in the blanks and help contractors implement this new law.


    Just thinking of my relatives in their old woodframe lead painted home in Pennsylvania, that many lived into their 90’s some 80′. My great grandparents lived in their 90’s to include the one that worked in the coal mines. One of their daughter, my grandmother lived to 92. Two still live in that old house.

  2. proreason says:

    “Haney said he’ll have to charge his customers an extra $95 to $125 per window — costs that could add up to hundreds or thousands of dollars more, depending on the size of a home”

    definitely not a tax.

    not even close to a tax.

    • mr_bill says:

      It was just the other day when we were discussing the very few industries that had not been directly assaulted by Nerobama and I noted the construction industry hadn’t been targeted, yet. That didn’t take long to fix.

    • canary says:

      Oro, I think he that figure was without profit even. The news I saw showed the old painted window frame, and then a close up of the worker with brand new unfinished wood being cut to put in entire new window frame.
      The EPA lady said the rain has washed all the lead from the paint into the soil on the property of the homes. Perhaps home-owners will have to pay haz-mat protected lawn men to mow their 5000′ square lawns for $500 bucks a week for the clip. An extra $500 to bag and dispose the clippings which have to be treated with chemicals before going to landfills.
      Course, China might take our homes and land as partial payment of money U.S. owes them. China likes lead paint for children.
      The lead tainted land would then be under China codes and regs, and maybe a nuclear plant, the sky’s the limit.

  3. Rusty Shackleford says:

    What has constantly annoyed me over the years is the liberals love for rules, rules and more rules. Remember, these are the self-same morons who fought against “the man, man” and “all his rules, man” only to come up with some that are downright idiotic.

    Though the INTENT to protect kids from ingesting lead-based paint was admirable, the initial satisfaction, or “high” if you will has long worn off and they need more and every increasingly tighter rules and regs to get that same sort of satisfaction.

    These people are addicts. They started out as drug addicts and have found a new thing to be addicted to. Making and changing policy and constraints.

    The true definition of a liberal is a person who thinks laws need to be applied to others, but not themselves.

    Another symptom of the problem is that when the rules are found lacking or don’t work at all—MORE RULES. Yes, this is why the “healthcare” bill is filled with caveats, exceptions, clauses, insertions, adjustments. It is not manageable. It cannot be adequately administered. It is a boondoggle and incomprehensible. It will do far more damage than good.

    Of course, those of us here who think about things and how they affect our daily lives, know this already. But when the whole kit ‘n’ caboodle hits mainstream, look out. One entity will enforce one section of the rules while another will ignore it while enforcing an entirely different set of rules.

    I’ve seen this before. It’s a trainwreck that has yet to leave the station.

    But the hippie-crats care not. They are all patting themselves on the back showing the “enemy” (that is, conservative America) that they can “do stuff” and “look very administrative” but to them, it’s all an act rather than a way to actually be.

    It’s like the guy who shows up at a function dressed as a caricature of what he thinks he’s supposed to look like. That is our government. All actors, all the time. None really think the processes through. They are functioning merely on the emotional level, which is why you never see them acknowledge a lie, or even try to correct themselves. When the cameras are off, they figure that “segment” is over, never to be heard from again.

    I think they are largely mentally dysfunctional.

  4. proreason says:

    “these are the self-same morons who fought against “the man, man” and “all his rules, man” only to come up with some that are downright idiotic”

    junior usually ends up being just like daddy

  5. beautyofreason says:

    “If he were doing the work in a pre-1978 home, it would take twice as long under the new EPA rule,”

    These regulations do what liberal policies have attained for years. They lower productivity, increase costs, and ultimately lessen the quality of life for all Americans through tedious regulation and taxation. Your money doesn’t go as far and your expenses increase. It’s a series of policies that erase, bit by bit, the benefits of capitalism.

    I don’t understand what’s going on in the minds of Democrats. The economy is bad so they’re going to try the value added tax? The WORST European tax of them all? So much for living cheap.

    Construction is down. Last year one of my relatives went from being an independent contractor with steady work to mowing grass for the state.

    So the liberal solution to our economy is to slap restrictions on construction that will raise prices by a hundred dollars per customer? So much for restoring historical homes.

    It’s hard enough to renovate a home in an economy where homes lose value. It’s even harder to get a job done when your price is artificially inflated by a hundred bucks.

    So much for economic recovery.

    • proreason says:

      “I don’t understand what’s going on in the minds of Democrats.”

      For many people, their fondest desire is to be in charge.

      You can see this in private business and the military as well. Many supervisors and managers would rather be the boss than anything else in the world. It’s more important to them than money, love or freedom.

      At the highest level, you get criminals like Obamy who are certifiably insane.

  6. Right of the People says:

    I saw a story about this on the news this morning. They painting contractor they spoke to said he and his entire crew have to get certified at over $300.00 per person before they can do any work. The classes are only available at very few places and the wait for a class is more than a month and will likely get longer. He said they can’t do any more work except on new homes (of which there are few) until they get their certificates.

    Oblah-blah has found the way to kill yet another American industry.

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