The State of New Jersey passed a law that will take effect on July 22, 2022. This law requires all “long term” rentals constructed prior to 1978 be inspected and tested for lead dust paint. They must deemed lead safe within two years of the law passing. The law also requires that upon renter turnover (for the long term rentals), the rental property is re-tested for lead dust paint and shall be deemed lead safe. A long term rental is defined as a residence that is rented for a time period of six months or more. Rentals that meet this criteria have to be lead dust sampled and inspected in NJ. That was a lot of information in one paragraph! See below for the Cliff Notes…
- Lead Paint Dust Inspection and Testing Mandatory July 2022 for long term rentals in NJ
- Residence must be constructed prior to 1978
- “Long Term” is defined six months or more
- Every long term rental in NJ that is currently occupied has to be tested within two years
- OR upon EVERY RENTER TURNOVER
If the local jurisdiction determines that a landlord is not in compliance with the law, the property owner is given a thirty day grace period to cure the violation by conducting the required inspection or curing any material defects in the lead dust sampling inspection.
If the property owner has not cured the violation after 30 days, the property owner shall be subject to a penalty not to exceed $1,000 per week until the required inspection has been conducted or remediation efforts have been initiated.
Why Was Lead Paint Used?
Prior to 1978, lead paint was used in the painting industry. According to the EPA, lead is still believed to be in millions of homes in the United States. “Lead Paint” and “Lead Based Paint” are common terms to describe any paint that contains lead. Lead was used to help accelerate the paint drying process, maintain durability and add moisture resistance. It was considered a cheap and effective way to manufacture paint.
Why was Lead Paint Banned and What are the Risks?
Lead paint was banned in 1978 due to the health risk associated with the use of lead. According to the CDC, “Lead-based paints were banned for residential use in 1978. Homes built in the U.S. before 1978 are likely to have some lead-based paint. When the paint peels and cracks, it makes lead paint chips and dust. Any surface covered with lead-based paint where the paint may wear by rubbing or friction is likely to cause lead dust including windows, doors, floors, porches, stairways, and cabinets.
Lead-based paint and lead-contaminated dust are some of the most widespread and hazardous sources of lead exposure for young children in the United States. Approximately 29 million housing units have lead-based paint hazards including deteriorated paint and lead-contaminated house dust. About 2.6 million of these are home to young children.”
Lead paint chips can be ingested into the body, lead paint dust can be absorbed into the skin or inhaled into the lungs. Small amounts of lead are dangerous to small children and even adults can have adverse health effects from lead exposure. Lead is considered a toxic metal.
What is the Lead Dust Sampling Certification Process?
Landlords should conduct a visual examination of the paint on their property (exterior and interior). Any paint defects should be addressed prior to the inspection. At the inspection, the inspector will conduct a visual inspection of the exterior and interior paint. If a defect is noted, the defect will be required to be repaired prior to a certificate being issued.
After the visual inspection is conducted, the inspector will take a lead dust pain swab from the floor and window sill in every bedroom. The inspector will also take a sample from the floor and window in a common area. These swabs and one blank swab (used for a control) will be sent to a certified laboratory for analysis.
If the inspector deems the paint is in good condition and the laboratory results are within acceptable standards, a lead safe certification will be issued. This certification is good for two years or tenant turnover.
If the paint is not in good condition or the laboratory results are not acceptable, the landlord will have to address any issues and the property will need re-inspected.
Any Lead Paint Dust Sampling must be conducted by an EPA Lead Safe Certified Firm. Fidelity Home Inspections is a Lead Safe Certified Firm. Call us for all your Lead Paint Dust Sampling and Inspection Needs (609) 337 6167!!! https://fidelityhomeinspection.com/schedule/
About the Owner
Athena Deichman is the owner and “face” of Fidelity Home Inspections. She loves kids and would not want to see any children (or adults for that matter) have any adverse health effects from living in a house with lead paint. Athena also advises that she can’t taste the difference between lead dust paint chips or regular paint chips (neither can your pets)!. If your house is built prior to 1978 get your house inspected for lead dust!
In her spare time she likes going for long walks, eating snacks, napping on every piece of furniture in the house, and hanging out with her family. She is also an advocate for dog adoption if you are thinking about adopting a dog here is a link to her rescue: