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Inspections for commercial buildings are very similar to residential inspections. The significant difference is that commercial buildings have many more safety concerns than single-family homes because of their size and variety. Commercial building inspectors are responsible for inspecting, testing and certifying commercial buildings in various states. Here are tips on what building inspectors look for during a commercial building inspection.

1. Building Zoning Laws and Regulations

Building and zoning ordinances vary from one town or city to another. Therefore, commercial inspectors need to be aware of any zoning requirements that the building may not meet for legal occupancy. This could include not having enough parking spaces available for tenants or no disabled access. An inspector will inform the building owner of any zoning laws that have not been met to rectify the deficiency as soon as possible.

2. Structural Integrity and Safety

Commercial buildings are inspected for both safety and structural codes. One safety concern is ensuring all exit doors work properly and open properly, especially in an emergency such as a fire or other disaster situation. All emergency exits and exits to the outside must allow all building occupants to escape safely, especially in a life-or-death case. If an inspector finds any exit doors that do not work correctly or open properly, the building owner must have them fixed immediately.

3. Electrical and Plumbing Inspections

A commercial building inspector will check the electrical wiring on a commercial building to ensure it is safe and up to code. The inspector will also check for signs of electrical fires and ensure there are no loose wires. Commercial building inspectors will also check the plumbing of a building. Important things to look for include checking that there are no signs of leaks or cracks in water or sewer pipes and that all toilets and sinks are working correctly.

4. Roof Structure

The roof structure of a commercial building is very important to ensure its safety and structural integrity. An inspector will check for missing shingles and broken or damaged flashing around vents, gutters or chimneys and ensure no holes in the roofing material. Most commercial building inspectors are well-trained at determining if a roof is structurally sound and can give an opinion based on their inspection.

5. Exterior Unit Inspection

The inspector will always be equipped with the necessary testing tools to check for the presence of asbestos and other harmful substances that may be present in the building. The inspector will also carefully examine all masonry, plaster and concrete surfaces to ensure that everything is structurally sound and will remain in good condition for a long time.

6. Interior Suite Inspection

The inspector will check for hazardous materials such as asbestos, lead paint and dangerous fumes. The inspector will also carefully examine all of the structural aspects of all interior walls and floors, staircases, ceilings, windows and doors. Tiles, floor surfaces, ceiling finishes, and walls will all be thoroughly inspected.

Bottom Line

Commercial inspections should be done periodically to ensure that the building owners have time to remedy potential safety issues or deficiencies. An expert commercial inspection can bring a building up to code and ensure its structural integrity. The inspector will also be aware of any zoning requirements and other regulations that may have been violated.