News Releases from Region 09
U.S. EPA reaches settlements with Century 21 and Coldwell Banker for failures to disclose lead-based paint information in Hawaii
HONOLULU – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has settled with two real estate companies for violating the federal Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) by failing to provide proper lead-based paint disclosure to buyers and renters of homes built before 1978 in Maui and the Big Island. Century 21 Homefinders of Hawaii in Hilo, and Coldwell Banker Island Properties of Kahului, Maui, are paying, collectively, a total of more than $26,000 in penalties.
“Reducing childhood lead exposure and addressing associated health impacts is a top priority for EPA,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Mike Stoker. “These settlements protect Hawaii communities by ensuring that lead paint rules and regulations are followed.”
The companies were cited under TSCA’s lead-based paint Disclosure Rule, which applies to housing built before the residential use of lead-based paint was banned in 1978.
The Disclosure Rule requires sellers and lessors of pre-1978 homes to provide prospective homebuyers and tenants with a federal brochure about lead-based paint, any information known about lead-based paint in the home, and a warning statement about the potential dangers of lead-based paint.
Buyers also have the option to inspect pre-1978 homes before becoming obligated to make a purchase. With this knowledge, potential homebuyers and tenants can make informed decisions about whether to buy or rent a specific residence.
Century 21 Homefinders of Hawaii has agreed to pay a $6,962 penalty to settle alleged disclosure violations. Coldwell Banker Island Properties paid a $19,344 penalty in an earlier settlement. Both real estate companies have certified that they are presently in compliance with the requirement to provide prospective buyers and lessees with lead-based paint hazard disclosure information.
High blood levels of lead can cause permanent damage to the nervous system and widespread health problems, including reduced intelligence and attention span, hearing loss, stunted growth, reading and learning problems, and behavioral difficulties. Young children are most vulnerable because their nervous systems are still developing. Adults with high blood levels of lead can suffer difficulties during pregnancy, high blood pressure, nerve disorders, memory problems, and muscle and joint pain.
Learn about the Disclosure Rule: https://www.epa.gov/lead/real-estate-disclosure
Report a lead-based paint violation: https://www.epa.gov/lead/pacific-southwest-lead-based-paint-tips-complaints
Learn about available lead compliance assistance resources from the National Lead Information Center: 1-800-424-5323
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