On April 22, 2010, the Lead-Safe Renovation Rule took effect in Wisconsin. Rental property owners, both residential and commercial, who conduct renovation activities on rental properties need to comply with the requirements of the Lead-Safe Renovation Rule, including using a certified Lead-Safe Renovator and obtaining certification as a Lead-Safe Company. Property owners need to be aware that even the most minor renovation project will require a certified Lead-Safe Renovator.

The new rule regulates renovation, repair and painting activities performed for compensation in housing and child-occupied facilities built prior to 1978. The purpose of the rule is to protect occupants from being exposed to lead-based paint hazards during and after renovation, repair and painting activities that disturb painted surfaces. Beginning April 22nd, every regulated project requires at least one certified Lead-Safe Renovator to be in charge of compliance with the regulation, including the training of uncertified workers and final cleaning verification.

Wisconsin contractors, residential and commercial rental property owners and owners of child care facilities need to be aware of the rule's certification requirements. Any renovation project on a building that could potentially contain lead-based paint will require a closer look to determine how Wisconsin's Lead-Safe Renovation Rule applies. The cost of ignoring the new certification requirement when undertaking renovation projects is onerous—the Wisconsin Department of Health Services may impose a daily fine of between $100 to $1,000 for each violation. Moreover, each day of continued violation constitutes a separate offense.