In developing a commercial narrative library, should I include a code reference at the end of each narrative?

To create the library, I’m going through the IBC and at this point it’s pretty easy for me to include at the end of each narrative the title of the code that supports the narrative.

Not all narratives will be based on building codes, but for the ones that are, seems like it would be a lot easier to put them in there for those who want to include them in the report for credibility reasons and let those who don’t want them just delete them, than to leave them out and make those who want to provide code references look each one up.

What do you think?

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I do not currently perform commercial but if I
did, I believe I would prefer the code reference. When I perform Pre-drywall or New construction inspections, I include a reference at the end of my narrative to the appropriate IRC code.

I think that is a great ideal. I personally would use the codes as a reference.

If you include code references in your narratives, your narratives will only be relevant in jurisdictions that have adopted that language by ordinance. Not all jurisdictions adopt the current codes and, those who do, do not necessarily do so at the time (or even within the same year) the update is published. Case in point - a city near mine still uses the 2005 NEC. Thus, a person using a narrative with your code reference is in danger of providing incorrect information unless they take the additional time to review the citation against the applicable ordinance. Thus, no time would be saved.


That’s one of the main arguments against including them, James.

Inspectors would have to check which version of which code is in force in the area in which the property they inspect is located. I’m using the 2015 IBC, and trying to keep the narratives general and common enough that they’ll be relevant across a number of versions. Stuff like, you can’t obstruct the means of egress. And even if the code language doesn’t change, the code numbers could change over time.

Also, there’s overlap among code publications, too. IBC, IFC, IMC, etc.

The other thing I could do, which I’ve already done so far, is to list the code titles (along with their numbers) as a group at the beginning or end of each IBC section, and that would at least give those who want to look them up a head start.

Never write a PCA that doubles as a code inspection. Fair warning.

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I agree with Darren and also with Jim. Code location should be left out. You do your inspections using the codes as a guideline when doing a commercial inspection. We are not code inspectors whether you are doing residential or commercial.
Commercial is not only a 5 apartment complex. It could also be an industrial metal building where there is a lot more to look at and the components differ by a wide margin.

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I am hearing that loud and clear.