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Pre-1978 Housing

The Federal Law: Renting, Buying, or Renovating pre-1978 Housing

Federal law (Title X, Section 1018) requires landlords, sellers, and renovators to give information on lead based paint and lead based paint hazards before the sale or lease of target housing. Target housing includes most private housing, public housing, housing receiving federal assistance, and federally owned housing built before 1978. 

This law does not affect some housing. Housing that is not affected includes:

  • Housing built after 1977.
  • Zero bedroom dwellings, such as lofts, efficiencies, and studios.
  • Leases of dwelling units of 100 days or fewer, such as vacation homes or short-term rentals.
  • Housing for the elderly and the handicapped (unless children live there).
  • Rental housing that has been inspected by a certified inspector and is found to be free of lead-based paint.
  • Foreclosure sales.

Selling a House

If you're selling target housing, you must:

  • Provide information and any existing reports on all known lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards in the housing.
  • Give buyers the EPA pamphlet Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home.
  • Give buyers a 10-day time period to test the housing for lead.
  • Include certain disclosure and acknowledgement language in the sales contracts.

Renting a House

If you're renting target housing, you must:

  • Provide information and any existing reports on all known lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards in the housing.
  • Give renters the EPA pamphlet Protect Your Family From Lead in Your Home.
  • Include certain disclosure and acknowledgement language in the leasing contract.

Renovating a House

If you're renovating target housing, then you must give homeowners the EPA pamphlet Protect Your Family From Lead in Your Home. Landlords and property managers who perform renovations must also give this pamphlet to tenants before they start work.

For Additional Information

If you're a landlord, seller, renovator, tenant, or (home) buyer and would like more information on the Disclosure Rule (Title X, Section 1018) and it's requirements, contact the EPA or the National Safety Council (NSC)

Renovate Right! Guide