In California, owners of multi-family apartment buildings with three or more units are now required to inspect their decks, balconies, stairs, and other load-bearing structures at least once every six years, according to a law signed this week by Governor Jerry Brown. Co-authored by state Sens. Jerry Hill, (D-San Mateo) and Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) and prompted by the Berkeley balcony collapse in 2015 that killed six students, SB 721 applies to both the structures themselves and to their associated waterproofing elements, such as flashings, membranes, coatings, and sealants.
Owners have until January 1, 2025 to complete the first inspection, which must be performed by a licensed architect; licensed civil or structural engineer; a building contractor holding any or all of the “A,” “B,” or “C-5” license classifications issued by the Contractors’ State License Board; or by a certified building inspector or building official from a recognized state, national, or international association, as determined by the local jurisdiction. The new rule does not apply to condominiums or other common interest developments, but does apply to buildings that are subject to inspection that are proposed for conversion to condominiums after January 1, 2019.
This article originally appeared in Professional Deck Builder.