Greg Mrakich Painting: What the EPA RRP Rules Mean to You (If Your Home was Built Before 1978)

Last weekend, my wife and I toured the 38th annual Meridian Kessler Home Tour in our hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana. Greg Mrakich Painting was pleased to be a first time sponsor of this annual tour. Each year, several hundred people buy tickets to tour these wonderful vintage homes. Most of the homes featured on the tour have been lovingly restored and updated over the years. So, if you have fallen in love with an older home like those featured on the tour, and your dream is to find one to call home, it’s a good idea to understand what the EPA Renovation Repair and Painting (RRP) rules will mean to you. With these regulations that went into effect last year addressing lead safety, the game has changed for anyone planning to purchase, remodel or schedule routine maintenance such as painting for any home built prior to 1978.  Since I am a professional painting contractor doing business in the Metropolitan Indianapolis area, I will just address painting in this blog.

How Does the EPA RRP Rules Effect Painting Contractors?

Painting contractors working on a home built before 1978 face fines up to $37,500 per infraction if caught not following the EPA lead paint protocols.

Why should you care, John and Marsha Homeowner?

Higher costs.  The EPA lead regulations can add an average of 30% more time on to the average exterior paint job. (I compared notes with fellow painting contractors in the Indianapolis area.)  With heavy fines, and aggressive enforcement (it IS a cash cow) it will soon be very hard to find a legitimate painting contractor who does not follow the EPA regulations when working on a pre-1978 project.  Not having the EPA certification and the threat of getting caught for not following the regulations is thinning the herd.

So how do you as a homeowner keep the price down?

The EPA RRP rules will allow you a certain amount of paint peeling before painters have to break out the moon suits.  For exteriors,  it is 20 square feet per side of the house and 6 square feet for each interior room (LEAD Safety for Renovation, Repair, and Painting Student Manual EPA-740-R-09-002  sec.2 page 3) That may sound like a lot,  but the numbers add up quickly on a home with wood siding.  Your best protection against paint job sticker shock is to schedule your painting project before the paint starts falling off your house.  A little peeling is ok,  but at the first sight of peeling, either fix it yourself or call a professional painting contractor. At the very least, have a painter spot paint the peeling areas if you can’t afford the entire paint job now.  This will save you money and keep us painters out of the bee keeper suits.  Once you have a quality paint job on the house, future paint jobs will be easier and less costly.

Greg Mrakich Painting is an EPA lead-safe certified firm serving the greater Indianapolis market (Marion, Hamilton and Boone counties). Prior to relocating to Indianapolis from Pasadena, California in 2000, Greg Mrakich was licensed in painting and decorating by the State of California Contractors License Board. If you live in the Metropolitan Indianapolis area and would like to contact Greg about your next painting project click here.

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