During the course of almost any remodeling project, periodic field inspections are required to ensure that the scope of work is aligned with the permit, and is being performed in compliance with local building codes. Special attention by the inspector is given to things like footings, plumbing systems, electrical wiring, fire blocking, and insulation. In the District of Columbia, the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) oversees this process. (Acquiring necessary permits for remodeling or home renovation is also supervised by the DCRA and was covered in an earlier post – Permitting). Inspections can be performed by a District inspector, or a third party inspector who is licensed by the District of Columbia.
For reasons such as ease of scheduling and communication, Four Brothers uses the third party agency Institute for Building Technology and Safety (IBTS) for the inspections in all remodeling projects. For the remodel at 753 a number of inspections were required along the way, however, close-in inspections were the most gratifying. Close-ins are when the hidden plumbing, electrical, structural, fire blocking and mechanical systems are inspected to ensure compliance to code. Once the stamp of approval is given, the walls can literally be closed in. At this point the kitchen, bathroom, or in this instance, the whole house begins to transform from framing, wiring, and plumbing pipes into an actual living space. After passing the close-ins with flying colors, we were ready to begin hanging wallboard.