EPA Regulations and Contractors: Better Health or Higher Fees?

April 2, 2010 Posted by in Industry News

It’s safe to say that we’re all interested in protecting our health and the health of those around us, but the new EPA lead paint regulations intended to do just that aren’t boding too well with contractors.  As with many other rules of its kind, these will undoubtedly hit businesses, especially smaller ones, right where it hurts.

lead based paint

Starting on April 22nd of this year, any remodeling project in a space larger than 6 interior square feet or 20 exterior square feet completed in a home or school that was built before 1978 requires that all workers be trained in how to safely handle lead paint.  This will extend to window replacement projects as well.  The cost of not following these regulations is a hefty one, to say the least.  One infraction will cost $32,000.

In order to get certified, all workers must complete a course that costs approximately $500 to $600 per head.  Smaller companies, unfortunately, may not be able to handle the cost of certification for all employees.

As the costs trickle down to homeowners, there is also a possibility that DIY projects will spike, meaning less business for those trained in the field.  Fortunately, however, workers who have been experiencing the ill effects of lead-based paint should find some relief.

For now, contractors across the board will just have to wait and see how it will affect their bottom line.  Hopefully the outcome won’t be as grim as the predictions.

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