Staying up to date on code changes

While we aren’t code inspectors, our safety recommendations are usually based on code. So I’m wondering what are good resources for staying up to date on residential code changes when each update is released. I know you could go through the entire thing but feel like there has got to be something that just talks about the modifications and additions to the codes…

If you want to head down this path than you need to visit your residential building commissioners website and learn which codes your jurisdiction follows. Purchase the code books which can run up to $500 for one trade. There’s information you can look up on Upcodes online that will only get you close.

When I was a plumber in Illinois there was a plumbing code for the state and a separate code for Chicago, Every county had some variation and every city had some type of variation as well. Do you see where this is heading?

Best advice is your not a code inspector and if you suspect a code issue refer the findings to a licensed contractor. Nothing wrong with learning local codes.


That is a daunting task that is a full-time job in and of itself. I cover a service area from Northern Iowa to all of Minnesota State, and that’s just Residential. Add in Commercial and Industrial, and Oy Vey!!!

What do I do? I affiliate myself with industry Experts via Social Media. One of many examples would be Mike Holt for Electrical. You may have seen some of his videos and graphics that have been shared here. In fact, I shared one last week or two regarding Hydro-massage tubs and bonding. His website offers a ton of FREE resources as well as FOLLOW him on Facebook, YouTube, etc…

Look around. There is great information out there is you know what to look for and take the time to search it out.


And that means EACH jurisdiction that you work in…

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You can also, at least in my area, reach out to the local building official if you have a question. In Virginia, home inspectors are not allowed to quote codes, but you can call it out as a possible issue. Hopefully you are looking at new work and not looking at how the code affects an older home. If it is safety related, call it out. If I am in a new home or one under construction, and see a potential code issue, I refer it to the builder and local building official for clarification.

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