The HUD Office of Multifamily Housing Programs has released its updated Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP) Guide. Released on December 18, 2020, the guidance goes into effect on March 18, 2021. Key updates to radon measurement and mitigation requirements include:

  • Section 9.6.3.2.C – the previous guidance permitted the radon professional to conclude that testing or mitigation isn’t necessarily based on a physical inspection of the property, the characteristics of the buildings, and other valid justifications. The updated guidance requires a valid justification for requesting exemption of testing or mitigation, based on criteria detailed in the applicable ANSI/AARST standard, to be provided by the radon professional in the form of a signed letter.
  • Section 9.6.3.2.C – the previous guidance excluded testing and mitigation for Section 223(f) projects located in Zone 3 of the EPA’s Map of Radon Zones. The updated guidance removes this exclusion, requiring testing and mitigation for all Section 223(f) projects.
  • Section 9.6.3.2.D – the previous guidance permitted random screening of 25% of ground contact units in each building in lieu of the full 100% characterization required by the measurement standard. The updated guidance removes this deviation, requiring radon testing to be conducted in full compliance with the ANSI/AARST measurement standard, which includes 100% testing of ground contact units in each building.
  • Section 9.6.3.2.G – the previous guidance permitted a ‘worst-case’ estimate for mitigation to be conducted as a non-critical repair. The updated guidance requires the lender to include a firm scope of work and all related costs for mitigation in the Firm application. In order to provide the firm scope of work and all related costs for mitigation, the pilot test and building evaluation will need to be treated as a critical repair.
  • Section 9.6.3.2.I – the previous guidance provided general parameters for the ongoing operation, maintenance, and monitoring (OMM) requirements when a mitigation system is installed at a property. The updated guidance requires an OMM program meeting the requirements of the ANSI/AARST mitigation standard to be maintained at a property containing a mitigation system for the duration of the insured mortgage. The OMM plan must be submitted to HUD upon completion of the mitigation project.
  • Section 9.6.3.2.J – the previous guidance did not include a provision for ensuring existing mitigation systems at a property are functioning correctly and meet the minimum requirements of the mitigation standard. The updated guidance requires existing mitigation systems at a property to be evaluated by a radon professional to confirm compliance with the ANSI/AARST mitigation standard and to verify they are functioning correctly. If applicable, corrective action must be taken by a radon professional to address any deficiencies with the mitigation systems.
  • Section 9.6.3.2.K – the previous guidance permitted a ‘worst-case’ cost estimate for mitigation and did not require inclusion of ongoing OMM costs. The updated guidance requires the lender to provide a firm scope of work and all related mitigation costs, to include ongoing OMM costs, in the Firm application.

For loans where the Firm application is submitted prior to the effective date, the lender must choose whether the 2016 or 2020 version of the MAP Guide will be utilized, stating this choice in the application. The lender may not mix underwriting provisions from both guides during the 90-day transition period.

The updated guidance is being implemented as we work to overcome the radon measurement and mitigation challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 measurement and mitigation guidance released by HUD’s Office of Multifamily Housing Programs on April 2, 2020 remains in effect. Check out our April 3, 2020 update on this guidance.

The updated guidance is specific to projects being processed under the MAP Guide. We anticipate similar radon measurement and mitigation guidance for projects being processed under the Office of Residential Care Facilities Section 232 Handbook in the future. The COVID-19 measurement and mitigation guidance released by ORCF on April 10, 2020 remains in effect. Check out our April 10, 2020 update on this guidance.       

As always, the trusted professionals at Protect Environmental stand ready to assist you in determining the most efficient and economical approach for managing radon and chemical vapor intrusion. As the largest provider of radon measurement and mitigation services to HUD lenders, you can rely on our knowledge and expertise to provide flexible options to ensure your transactions continue to move forward in a timely and cost-effective manner. Follow our LinkedIn portal for timely updates related to the rollout of HUD’s updated MAP Guide.