Everything you need to be lead-safe!

As an owner of a 1-4-unit residential rental property or family childcare home in Toledo, Ohio, you are required to have your property inspected and certified lead-safe under TMC 1760 “Residential Rental Properties and Lead Safety Compliance” also known as the Toledo Lead Ordinance. This requirement is being phased-in by census tract over several compliance deadlines.

DOWNLOAD THE LEAD SAFETY ORDINANCE
DOWNLOAD THE RENTAL REGISTRY ORDINANCE

Lead-safe is a proactive approach. It means making sure homes don’t pose a lead risk before a child could be poisoned. A home is lead-safe when lead risks – known as lead hazards – have been controlled so the concentration of lead dust remains below the threshold set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This means a lead-safe home is no longer hazardous but may still contain lead.

In order to combat lead poisoning, the City of Toledo is requiring Lead-Safe Certificates for the most at-risk properties. To obtain a Lead-Safe Certificate, units must pass a lead clearance test conducted by an independent, licensed local lead inspector.

We know that the majority of lead poisoning occurs in homes built before 1978 from the ingestion of lead-based paint and the consumption of lead-dust. Visual inspection alone cannot tell us if this granular level of lead-dust is present; dust wipe analysis is recognized by health departments across the country and the EPA to determine lead-dust levels. Dust wipes are currently our best available scientific tool for measurement and enforcement of lead safety.

Because the majority of Toledo’s housing stock was built before 1978, we have inherited a large, toxic legacy of lead paint. Every year, hundreds of Toledo children test high for lead in their blood, 5 µg/dL or greater. There is no safe level of lead in the bloodstream. 5 µg/dL represents the highest 2.5% of children ages 1-5 in the entire U.S. population. You can read more about elevated blood lead levels on the CDC’s website.

  • Only family childcare homes and residential rental properties with 1-4 units built before 1978 fall under the lead-safe certification law.
  • The fee for the lead-safe certification is $25 instead of the previous $45.
  • The Toledo-Lucas County Health Department will issue the lead-safe certificates, while the City of Toledo’s Department of Neighborhoods will coordinate the program, and Code Enforcement will enforce.
  • Lead-safe certificates are available for 5 years, or 20 years in the case of full abatement.
  • Residential rental properties must also be registered with the Lucas County Auditor.

This law was passed unanimously by City Council on October 20, 2020.

If you received a lead-safe certificate under the previous ordinance, you are grandfathered-in under the new ordinance and do not have to do anything further. Your new lead-safe certificate will be mailed to you at the address you provided on your previous application no later than June 30th, 2020 with a new expiration date of 5 or 20 (in the case of full abatement) years from the ordinance’s date of passage.

If this property is no longer under your ownership, you can transfer the certificate to the new owner before the expiration date by resubmitting the Lead-Safe Certificate Application with a $10 refiling fee.

If you had a Local Lead Inspection under the previous ordinance but did not receive a certificate, you can use that same clearance exam / lead report for your application. Prior inspections from 2016 forward will be honored. You do not have to complete this inspection again. You should contact the Local Lead Inspector you hired if you need a copy of their report.

You can check the status of Lead-Safe Certificates for any property online at our Lead-Safe Map.

You can find a list of currently active Local Lead Inspectors here. This list is updated regularly.

Please note: We strongly recommend that property owners only hire Local Lead Inspectors who are licensed, bonded, and insured. The list we provide includes only those licensed and registered with the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department to do this work. You should verify their credentials yourself to confirm they are bonded and insured. We make no guarantees on insurance or bond coverage of Local Lead Inspectors.

Besides being required under law, there are many benefits to rental owners for getting their Lead-Safe Certificate.

  • You will have additional peace of mind that your property is considered lead-safe for pregnant women and children to live in.
  • Your rental will be listed as lead-safe for potential tenants to find on this website.
  • A Lead-Safe Certificate provides a clear record of the owner’s work to address lead safety if someone later tries to make a legal claim based on lead poisoning.

The City of Toledo Department of Neighborhoods currently has two grant programs available to help owners become lead-safe:

  1. Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control Grant: designed to assist eligible homeowners and landlords in the identification and remediation of lead hazards in eligible units within the City of Toledo. Under this program, the City coordinates and manages the assessment and any abatement-related work. Owner-occupants may receive up to $16,000 of assistance, and rental owners can receive up to $14,000. Click here to learn more and download the application.
  2. Early Bird Matching Grant: created to help rental owners and family childcare home operators become compliant with Toledo’s new Lead Ordinance. This grant will reimburse 50% of most compliance-related costs, up to $5,000 per unit. Click here to learn more and apply online or download the application.
Man lifting young child on his shoulders

Step-by-Step Ordinance Compliance


Step 1: Register your rental property with the Lucas County Auditor. (Family childcare homes skip this step.)

Ohio Revised Code 5323 set the rental registry requirement before the local ordinance was created. The City of Toledo has partnered with the Auditor to help enforce the registry within Toledo.

Find out if your rental registry is up to date, coming soon to our Lead-Safe Map!

REGISTER ONLINE
PRINT & MAIL FORM

Step 2: Hire a Local Lead Inspector.

Local Lead Inspectors are licensed by the State of Ohio as Clearance Technicians, Lead Inspectors, or Lead Risk Assessors, and they have registered to do this work with the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department. A list of currently active Local Lead Inspectors with their contact information is provided here.

We strongly recommend that property owners verify the credentials of a Local Lead Inspector to assure they are insured/bonded, though insurance and bonding are not required by law to do this work. We make no guarantees on insurance or bond coverage of Local Lead Inspectors.


Step 3: Prepare your property for inspection.

Most often, basic painting updates and cleaning will help a rental owner pass their inspection. But if you need additional help, the City of Toledo has grant and loan programs available to help you.

DOWNLOAD PREP TIPS

Step 4: Apply for a Lead-Safe Certificate.

Once you have your passing lead-safe report from your Local Lead Inspector, you may apply for your certificate by printing and mailing the application with all appropriate documentation and a check to the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department.

Online submissions with payment options coming soon!

PRINT & MAIL APPLICATION

Step 5: Repeat every 5 or 20 years.

Most lead-safe certificates are valid for 5 years, but in the case of full abatement or proof that a property contains no lead-based paint, 20-year certificates are available. A property’s lead-safe certificate status will be publicly available on our Lead-Safe Map.


Upcoming Deadlines

Help is Available!

The City of Toledo Department of Neighborhoods currently has two grant programs available to help owners become lead-safe:

  1. Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control Grant: designed to assist eligible homeowners and landlords in the identification and remediation of lead hazards in eligible units within the City of Toledo. Under this program, the City coordinates and manages the assessment and any abatement-related work. Owner-occupants may receive up to $16,000 of assistance, and rental owners can receive up to $14,000.
  2. Early Bird Matching Grant: created to help rental owners and family childcare home operators become compliant with Toledo’s new Lead Ordinance. This grant will reimburse 50% of most compliance-related costs, up to $5,000 per unit.

The State of Ohio also has programs and incentives for owners to become lead-safe:

  1. Medicaid SCHIP Grant
  2. Lead Abatement Tax Credit Program
  3. Lead-Safe Housing Registry

Community partners working to protect children by preventing lead poisoning.

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