Who Is Affected
The new balcony law applies to buildings with 3 or more multi-family dwelling units – in other words, thousands of apartment buildings in California.
What Counts as an Exterior Elevated Element?
The “Balcony Law” applies to much more than balconies, focusing on structures that are mostly made of wood or have a wood-based framework, including:
- Entry structures more than 6-feet above ground level
What Are the Deadlines and Fines?
Commercial property owners have until January 1, 2025, to have their wood-framed external elevated structures inspected by a qualified professional. After that, they must have their external elevated structures inspected every 6 years.
In the event that inspectors do find repairs necessary and the owners of the buildings don’t comply within 180 days, the inspector will notify local law enforcement and the owner of the building. If repairs are not done 30 days after the notification, the owner will get a civil penalty, around $100-$500 for every day the repairs are not completed.
Who Can Perform Inspections for SB-721?
The inspection must be done by a certified professional, such as:
- Licensed architects, licensed civil or structural engineers
- Building contractors with a minimum of 5 years’ experience
- Individuals certified as building inspectors or building officials
What Happens if Repairs Are Needed?
There are two types of repairs:
- Non-Emergency Repairs
In this situation, the owner must apply for a permit to make repairs within 120 days of receiving the report. Once the permit is approved, the owner has another 120 days to make the repairs.
- Emergency Repairs
This means the external elevated elements are not structurally sound, may be dangerous to the safety of residents, and require immediate emergency repairs. Subsequently, any repairs made must again be inspected and reported to law enforcement.
Our Inspection Services
At Deck Inspectors, we want to make sure that our community is served well and safely. Getting inspections doesn’t just save you money – it preserves the value of your property. Our inspections include:
- A detailed report by a certified inspector
- Photo documentation if contracted
- Repair or maintenance of decking and waterproofing systems if contracted
- Destructive testing if contracted
Inspection, and expert waterproofing in general, are priceless investments that protect property value and strengthen the relationship between residents, property managers, and owners.
To learn more about SB-721, receive advice, or get a thorough inspection by an elite team of waterproofing experts, contact us today.