Can I Occupy My Building Now?
Picture this, you have just invested nearly one year of your life and 5 million dollars as it has been poured in this dream of yours (at least that how your friends say it). In front of you is the shinny new building, it seats 200 people, its contemporary, it has state of the art cooking equipment, the cash registers are in, and the staff are waiting to be trained. Excitement and anticipation are high. The final inspection is underway and then we find out we just failed our final inspection.
The final inspection is the last step before the building owner/occupant can get a certificate of occupancy. Emotions tend to run high for building owners as they are preparing to start making money out of their brand new building.
Unfortunately, many final inspections are a punch list creation for contractors and owners. The building is simply not ready and the inspection process is used as an extension or an excuse to delay the certificate. This approach is highly undesirable for building inspectors. Some simple understanding and resources can help aid the occupant before the request is made for final inspection.
The final inspection is the inspector’s last chance to review a building and its associated systems. Items such as:
- Have all inspectors given a final inspection on the appropriate systems?
- Have as-built or record drawings been submitted?
- Has staff training been performed in accordance with the local fire code?
- Did the excess construction materials, trailers, or temporary power been removed?
- Has the community planning division signed off on requirements from their process?
- Does the building have an address?
The list can go on and it is important for communities to help occupants identify what must be completed for final inspection. A simple checklist or resource given by inspectors, prior to the request for final inspection can save many headaches and calls to City Hall. Checklists can help the contractor ensure that all items have been addressed or help the inspector ensure all items are completed.
- City of Loveland Colorado, What do I need for a Final Inspection
- Gaston County, South Carolina, Residential Final Building Checklist, Remodel or fie checklist.
- Jefferson County, The Inspection Sequence
- Miami Township Fire and EMS, final inspection checklist
Are there any tips you use during a final inspection? How about a temporary certificate of occupancy, will you issue them?