Real Estate Report

(June 28, 2019) Since 2015, the state of Maryland has made it mandatory for all properties built prior to 1978 to have a new lead inspection certificate at each change of occupancy.

Here is a reminder of some of the rules and regulations for property owners who rent their property.

The Maryland Department of the Environment’s Lead Rental Registry mission is to protect families and prevent childhood poisoning from the exposure of lead by ensuring property owners register affected properties in compliance with the Maryland State Lead Laws.

The following properties are required to register:

• Residential rental properties built before 1978 are required to be registered and then renewed annually with Maryland Department of the Environment.

• On or after Jan. 1, 2015, all properties built prior to 1978 must have a new lead inspection certificate at each change of occupancy.

• Residential rental properties built after 1977 and properties that have a passing Lead Free inspection certificate are exempt.

If you have a property built prior to 1978 that does not have a Lead Free inspection certificate, there are two ways to renew properties in the lead rental registry: online or via paper form.

The MDE’s email address is and their phone number is 410-537-4199 to request a form.

The registration fee to register a property is currently $30 per unit.

An important note: a complete change in ownership requires a new registration and a new tracking number. This includes adding owners or changing to a corporation, etc.

Registration is specific to ownership of a property and should match exactly what is on record with Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation.

Any different combination of ownership for a participating property will require an adjustment to the Lead Rental Registration file.

Properties are exempt regardless of their age if they meet the following criteria:

• The property is a hotel, motel or similar seasonal or transient facility; or

• The property has been lead paint tested by a MDE-accredited inspector and has issued a “Lead Free” or “Limited Lead Free” certificate. Any report submitted to the department certifying a unit as “Lead Free” or “Limited Lead Free” shall include a processing fee of $10 per unit.

— Lauren Bunting is a licensed Associate Broker with Bunting Realty, Inc. in Berlin.

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