Date Dispute: Lead-paint Ruling Could Pose Hazard to You

April 1, 2000

ALBANY, N.Y.--Federal agencies and a U.S. District Court in New York are divided on when lead-based paint disclosure rules went into effect, which puts real estate practitioners in potential legal jeopardy.

The District Court ruled that the requirement for owners and their agents to disclose the presence of lead-based paint to prospective buyers and tenants went into effect on Oct. 28, 1995, the date the federal law became effective, rather than on Sept. 6, 1996, as provided in the rules of the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Environmental Protection Agency. The two federal agencies adopted the later date to give themselves time to complete the final rules implementing the law--and to give interested parties time to familiarize themselves with the law.

If the District Court ruling holds, practitioners who complied with the HUD and EPA rules could still be found in violation of the law if they failed to provide disclosures for transactions that occurred between the two effective dates. NAR plans to support parties challenging the ruling.

The ruling “is flawed and inequitable” because it leaves real estate practitioners unable to do anything to remedy past actions taken in the belief that they were acting lawfully, say NAR analysts.

A federal appeals court is expected to look at the ruling, possibly this spring, and NAR will file a brief in support of the regulatory dates once it does, say NAR analysts. Other real estate organizations as well as HUD and EPA may also file briefs against the ruling.

Forbes: two thumbs-up for REALTOR.COM

Forbes Magazine has released a Best-of-the-Web review that put REALTOR.COM and the site of its operating parent,, on top of the World Wide Web.

By combining 1.3 million listings--the most of any real estate site--with extensive neighborhood, school, and community information, REALTOR.COM has demonstrated the ability to make the right moves in the frenzied Internet world. “With fierce competition raising the bar, this previously awkward site has cleaned up its act,” says Forbes. gets high marks for its diversity of content. But it really shines for its out-of-this-world bargains. Forbes used most of its ink talking about Home store’s links to sites that let you buy Martian real estate and used asteroids.

Some like it cold

You’d think the most popular state for movers would be in the sunny South. But Northern states have been the top magnet states for two years in a row.

No. 1 outbound state*

1999 North Dakota
1998 North Dakota

No. 1 magnet state*

1999 Vermont
1998 Alaska

*As a percentage of relocation activity

Source: Allied Van Lines,

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