Below are some of the most commonly-asked questions about the 40-Year Re-Certification process.
For many years, Miami-Dade and Broward counties have required a comprehensive structural and electrical inspection of most commercial buildings upon reaching 40-years of age to be performed by a registered architect or professional engineer (depending on electrical service size) and be recommended for re-certification based on their findings. This requirement is repeated every 10 years thereafter for as long as any portion of the building remains standing. Actual wording of the codes can be read here:
Exemptions are extended to single-family residences, duplexes and other buildings as follows:
- Miami-Dade County - Exemption for all buildings 2,000 sq. ft. less AND an occupant load of ten (10) or less
- Broward County - Exemption for all buildings 3,500 sq. ft. or less
If you do not respond within the initial 90-day time frame provided for in the Notice of Re-Certification Requirement mailed to you by your local jurisdiction, your building is typically referred to the Unsafe Structures Board for non-compliance. Additional fees and requirements are imposed and the building is threatened with demolition.
- Unfortunately, there is no rule-of-thumb that can approximate the duration of any re-certification inspection. Once we are familiar with your particular building's size and use, we will be able to provide an estimate of the expected duration.
The code stipulates that all areas of the subject's structure(s) must be reviewed for compliance.
We will require access to all tenant spaces at the time of inspection; additional visits due to lack of access may trigger additional fees.
- Surfaces that are suitable for a vehicle to drive on (asphalt, pavers, concrete, gravel, etc.) and that are accessible by automobile require illumination.
- Any surface that someone can reasonably expect to drive or park a car on and/or currently does so, requires illumination.
- Despite the existence of a gate that's always locked or is broken or hasn't been opened in years or any other similar circumstance, the code still applies.
- Current usage of the area in question is not considered (i.e.: Storage); areas can be re-purposed at will.
- A good rule-of-thumb is to do what the report reviewer will likely do. Go to the Google Street View and Satellite View of your property and see where cars are parked. These areas will likely require illumination at levels meeting or exceeding the imposed minimum levels. Some exclusions may apply.
- The short answer is, it depends on you. In most cases, deficiencies are discovered during the initial inspection, which can range from simple items that maintenance personnel can address, to significant structural and electrical repairs that require skilled providers. Basically, as soon as repairs are completed and verified, reports are issued. Furthermore, when required, interim reports can be provided that inform governing authorities of the nature and severity of repairs required. This affords additional time (typically 150 days) to complete such repairs and achieve compliance. In either case, reports are typically delivered within 7 calendar days of last inspection via USPS Priority Mail.
As part of the re-certification process, you will be required to provide payment directly to the governing jurisdiction as a fee for processing your reports. Additionally, the entire process will not be complete until the reports have been submitted, paid for, reviewed and approved, which can often take weeks. Therefore, we feel that these tasks are best left in the hands of the client. However, when circumstances or needs dictate, we are able to provide these services to you for an additional fee.