Living in Florida means warm weather and access to beautiful beaches all year round. However, The Sunshine State is also prone to hurricanes, wildfires, and thunderstorms. Property owners must keep their homes or buildings up to code or face serious consequences.
The importance of building code updates
Florida updates its building code every three years to help keep structures strong and secure for the safety of its residents. Staying on top of these updates will help property owners avoid potential accidents and damages, such as:
A building code update may require you to reconstruct or improve parts of your property. Not making these required changes can lead to a violation. An inspector should notify you about your offense and provide enough time for you to make changes.
If you cannot do so, you may have to pay fines of $500 to $5,000 per violation. Moreover, failing to pay these fines may result in a lien or a claim against your property to satisfy the debt.
Noncompliance with updated building codes could harm the people residing in or visiting your property. For instance, failing to repair staircase railings could cause someone to suffer serious harm. After an accident, the injured party may file a personal injury lawsuit against you if they have sufficient evidence.
Lower property value
Florida law requires property owners to disclose any code violations or property defects to buyers. It is best to keep your property up to code to avoid lowering the value of your property or losing a sale.
Common building code violations
In Florida, there are two issues that often result in violations:
- Strapping: Hurricane season in Florida lasts from June to November, and it can wreak havoc on homes and buildings. Because of this, Florida’s building code is strict about using hurricane strapping, which helps secure roofs and windows to a structure. Using the wrong straps or installing them incorrectly can result in a violation.
- Trusses: A truss helps stabilize the roof and distribute its weight evenly to the outer walls. Without a proper truss, the roof may collapse and cause serious damage. Poor construction of trusses is often a code violation.
Neglecting building code updates can lead to expensive fines, repairs, or legal fees. It may also damage your reputation as a property owner. Help keep your property and the people in it safe by staying updated with the Florida building code.