Friday, February 23, 2018

Do Hotels Fall Under the EPA's Lead Paint RRP Rule for Renovations?

Lead RRP License and Hotels

There is often some confusion on whether hotel rooms fall under the EPA's Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule, which aims to prevent contamination of lead paint dust during work performed on pre-1978 housing and child occupied facilities. After all, hotels or motels can sometimes serve as short term housing and they are certainly visited by children.

We took a deep dive into the EPA ruling and subsequently issued FAQs, and found that typically hotel rooms do not qualify as "target housing*" on the RRP rule as they are "zero-bedroom dwellings**" BUT if the hotel has suites with a separate sleeping area it could apply. Here are the two FAQ's from the EPA website that offer some insight into the RRP rule regarding work performed in hotel rooms:

Question 1: Older hotels built before 1978 are knocking down walls, combining two hotel rooms, and making their units two-room or even three-room suites. My understanding has been that single hotel rooms are considered zero-bedroom dwellings**. Does the RRP Rule apply when one-room units are converted to two-room suites? 

Answer: Yes. A renovation performed for the purpose of converting a building, or part of a building, into target housing or a child-occupied facility is a renovation for purposes of the RRP Rule. Hotel suites that provide a sleeping area that is separate from the living area are covered by the RRP Rule because they are not zero-bedroom dwellings**.

Question 2: Are renovations in short-term lodgings, such as hotels and motels, time share properties, and homeless shelters, covered by the RRP Rule? 

Answer: Yes, if the property renovated is not a zero-bedroom dwelling. A zero-bedroom dwelling is a residential dwelling in which the living area is not separated from the sleeping area. The term includes efficiencies, studio apartments, dormitory housing, military barracks, and rentals of individual rooms in residential dwellings. The short-term nature of a property’s occupancy does not in itself exempt it from the RRP Rule.

* Target housing means any housing constructed prior to 1978, except housing for the elderly or persons with disabilities (unless any child who is less than 6 years of age resides or is expected to reside in such housing) or any zero-bedroom dwelling.

** zero-bedroom dwelling means any residential dwelling in which the living area is not separated from the sleeping area. The term includes efficiencies, studio apartments, dormitory housing, military barracks, and rentals of individual rooms in residential dwellings.

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