Building a new home can be a creative and exciting undertaking. You can work with professional home builders from the first moment of construction all the way through to the final finishing stages to design and build a home that is perfect for you. To make sure that your home is being constructed properly, you can have your home inspected at different construction phases by a construction and building inspector. These inspectors can ensure that your new home conforms to local and national building codes and zoning regulations, and complies with the International Residential Code for One and Two Family Dwellings. A construction and building inspection can also verify that the building is being constructed to adequately prepare for the next planned construction phases.
Standard building phase inspections are usually conducted at three times during the construction process. Some owners and construction superintendents request more inspections if there are custom or non-traditional design elements in the building or if site-specific modifications need to be made because of location. Here are the three standard construction phase inspections for a residential home:
Phase 1: Foundation Installation Inspection: The first construction inspection usually occurs before the concrete foundation is poured. A construction and building inspector will look at the footings and structural reinforcements that are in place to make sure that they are adequate to support the planned design. The inspector will look at the size, dimensions, and steel composition of the support beams that are in place. The inspector will also look at the placement and installation of plumbing, wastewater, and sewer lines in relation to the site grade and drainage. The inspector's report will specify what exactly needs to be done before the concrete foundation can be poured and the next phase of construction can begin.
Phase 2: Framing and Mechanical Inspection: The second construction inspection usually occurs once framing on the building has been completed in all rooms and all mechanicals such as electricity, plumbing, heating, cooling, and ventilation have all been roughed in. No drywall or exterior walls should be in place during this inspection. The roof structure and attic framing can be installed and inspected at this time. A construction and building inspector can take detailed photographs of the construction at this phase and include them in his or her report along with recommendations of what needs to be done before construction on the walls, floors, ceilings, roof, and exterior surfaces can begin.
Phase 3: Final Inspection: This final inspection occurs once all of the walls, ceilings, floors, doors, windows, and roof are completed along with stairways, fireplaces, porches, balconies, and decks. All mechanical systems are checked at this time and the construction and building inspector's report should cite any issues that need to be addressed in order to comply with local and national building codes.
At all three building inspections, make sure to have copies of all architectural drawings and plans, building permits, state and local building codes, your signed contract with your construction superintendent, as well as copies of previous inspection reports.
Phased building inspections can help you and your construction superintendent by providing an independent third-party evaluation of construction on your new house. Construction and building inspector reports like those from AAA Inspections Specialties Inc. can give you the peace of mind of knowing that your home will serve you for many years.