In Maine, CO2 And Smoke Detectors..What's The ME State Requirement?

By
Real Estate Agent with MOOERS REALTY ME Broker License 106759

In Maine, starting November 1st, 2009 new rules for CO2 / smoke detectors when selling, buying AND renting ME homes, multi unit properties.

This new rule making regarding fire smoke houlton maine fire department, fire truckdetectors and carbon monoxide (CO 2) detectors. Single family homes homes and multi units also come under the legislation that becomes law the first of November.

Regarding the smoke and fire detector portion of the law, this is the pertinent excerpt from the legislation regarding single family house sales after November 1st, 2009. 

Smoke detectors required. The owner shall properly install, or cause to be properly
installed, smoke detectors in accordance with the National Electric Code and the manufacturer's
requirements. In existing single-family dwellings, at least one smoke detector, which may be
photoelectric, ionization or a combination of both, must be installed in each area within, or giving access to, bedrooms. These smoke detectors may be powered by the electrical service in the dwelling, by battery or by a combination of both. Any smoke detector located within 20 feet of a kitchen or a bathroom containing a tub or shower must be a photoelectric-type smoke detector.

After October 31, 2009, smoke detectors installed in a multifamily building or a newly constructed single family dwelling must be of the photoelectric-only type and must be powered both by the electrical service in the building or dwelling and by battery.

What about multi rental units? Even single family homes rented out?

In an apartment / home occupied under the terms of a rental agreement or under a
month-to-month tenancy:

A. At the time of each occupancy, the landlord shall provide smoke detectors. The smoke detectors
must be in working condition. After notification of any deficiencies by the tenant, the landlord shall
repair or replace the smoke detectors. If the landlord did not know and had not been notified of
the need to repair or replace a smoke detector, the landlord's failure to repair or replace the smoke
detector may not be considered as evidence of negligence in a subsequent civil action arising from
death, property loss or personal injury. The tenant shall keep the smoke detectors in working condition by keeping charged batteries in battery-operated smoke detectors, if possible, by testing the smoke detectors periodically, if possible, and by refraining from permanently disabling the smoke detectors.

So when you sell a Maine home, transfer it, what is the deal?

       A person who, after October 31, 2009, transfers by sale or exchange a single-family dwelling or a multi apartment building shall certify to the buyer at the closing of the transaction that the dwelling or each apartment in the building is provided with smoke detectors in accordance with this section.

This certification must be signed and dated by the real estate seller.

If the buyer notifies the seller within 10 days by certified mail from the date of conveyance of the dwelling or building that the dwelling or an apartment in the building lacks any smoke detectors or that any smoke detectors are not operable, the seller shall install smoke detectors in compliance with this section within 10 days after notification.

     Okay, that covers the smoke detector fire alarms part of the Maine legislation that becomes law houlton me fire,fire truckNovember 1st. But what is the nuts and bolts of the portion of law regarding carbon monoxide (CO2) detectors ?

Carbon monoxide detectors
1. Definition. "Carbon monoxide detector" means a device with an assembly that incorporates a
sensor control component and an alarm notification that detects elevations in carbon monoxide levels and
sounds a warning alarm and is approved or listed for the purpose by a nationally recognized independent
testing laboratory.
2. Carbon monoxide detectors required. The owner shall install, or cause to be installed,
by the manufacturer's requirements at least one approved carbon monoxide detector upon or near the
ceiling or floor in each area within, or giving access to, bedrooms in:
A. Each apartment in any building of multifamily occupancy;
B. Any addition to or restoration of an existing single-family dwelling that adds at least one bedroom
to the dwelling unit; and
C. Any conversion of a building to a single-family dwelling.
A carbon monoxide detector must be powered both by the electrical service in the building or dwelling
and by battery.

3. Multiapartment buildings. In multiapartment buildings more than 3 stories in height, the
owner shall install, or cause to be installed, approved carbon monoxide detectors in each corridor and
hallway on each floor in addition to the carbon monoxide detectors required under subsection 2.

4. Carbon monoxide detectors for persons with disabilities. Upon the request of a deaf or hard-of-hearing occupant, the owner of a dwelling unit shall provide an approved carbon monoxide detector suitable to warn the occupant within the dwelling unit.

If the owner does not provide a suitable carbon monoxide detector, the occupant may purchase, install and maintain a suitable carbon monoxide detector or arrange for proper installation and maintenance of a suitable carbon monoxide detector and may deduct the actual costs from the rent for the dwelling unit. An occupant may not be charged, evicted or penalized in any way for failure to pay the actual costs deducted from the rent for the dwelling unit.

5. New Maine home construction. A person who constructs a single-family dwelling shall install at leastpresque isle field fire
one carbon monoxide detector upon or near the ceiling or floor in each area within, or giving access
to, any bedroom in the dwelling.

The carbon monoxide detector must be powered both by the electrical
service in the dwelling and by battery.

6. Rental units. In an apartment occupied under the terms of a rental agreement or under a
month-to-month tenancy:


A. At the time of each occupancy, the landlord shall provide carbon monoxide detectors. The
carbon monoxide detectors must be in working condition. After notification of any deficiencies by
the tenant, the landlord shall repair or replace the carbon monoxide detectors. If the landlord did
not know and had not been notified of the need to repair or replace a carbon monoxide detector,
the landlord's failure to repair or replace the carbon monoxide detector may not be considered as
evidence of negligence in a subsequent civil action arising from death, property loss or personal
injury; and
B. The tenant shall keep the carbon monoxide detectors in working condition by keeping
charged batteries in battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors, if possible, by testing the carbon
monoxide detectors periodically, if possible, and by refraining from permanently disabling the
carbon monoxide detectors.
7. Transfer of dwelling. A person who transfers by sale or exchange a single-family dwelling
or a multiapartment building shall certify to the buyer at the closing of the transaction that the dwelling or each apartment in the building is provided with at least one carbon monoxide detector in accordance with this section.

This certification must be signed and dated by the real estate seller.

If the buyer notifies the seller within 10 days by certified mail from the date of conveyance of the
dwelling or building that the dwelling or an apartment in the building lacks a carbon monoxide detector or that the carbon monoxide detector is not operable, the seller shall install a carbon monoxide detector in compliance with this section within 10 days after notification. Violation of this paragraph does not create a defect in title.

What is the damage, the fine if you do not comply with the new Maine rules, law?houlton maine fire police ambulance building

9. Penalties. A person who violates this section is guilty of a civil violation and is subject to a fine of not more than $500 for each violation.

The court may waive any penalty or cost against any violator upon satisfactory proof that the violation was corrected within 10 days of the issuance of a complaint.

The long and short of it?

Directly from the state of Maine archives, hot off the press legislation enacted this session in August Maine.

SUMMARY This bill requires that all single-family dwellings and multiapartment buildings sold in the State and newly constructed single-family dwellings have photoelectric-only-type smoke detectors and at least one carbon monoxide detector in an area within or giving access to a bedroom. The detectors in multifamily dwellings and newly constructed single-family dwellings must be powered by both the electrical service in the building and by battery.

Photo electric smoke varieties are not available until the end of the month in Maine was what I was told by a local Houlton ME electrician this afternoon when I interviewed him like our old days as a Bangor Maine radio news director. He said the per unit cost is roughly $75-80 and as you start adding up the placement needed in an old home that is far less far to install then new construction it could get pricey. This electrician was waiting for a call from his supplier to see if a shipment could be found out of state before the deadline to be in compliance and I will do a follow up on this new law, how to it works without reading thru the entire law.Maine real estate agents / brokers warn and educate your ME home, multi unit owners, renters or tenants.

Maine Association Of Realtor's Linda Gifford spells it out if all the verbage of the legislation is confusing, unclear. Reach out to the MAR for the latest, any changes on the carbon monoxide detector rules.


Maine REALTOR Andrew Mooers - Maine, You Are Going To Really Like It Here.

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