If you are the owner of a multi-unit residential apartment building, then there is a pretty good chance that you have already heard about the new California Senate Bill 721, otherwise known as the “California Balcony Inspection Law”!

Much in the same way that the City of Los Angeles today requires earthquake retrofitting for “Soft Story” buildings that are vulnerable to earthquake damage, the new Balcony Inspection Law now requires mandatory safety inspections and repair of damaged balconies and other “Exterior Elevated Elements” (also called “EEE”).

IMPORTANT UPDATE:  California’s Balcony Inspection Law

Well, today there is an important update to the Balcony Inspection Law!  Senate Bill 721, which was enacted in 2019, originally prohibited those contractors who conducted the required inspection on balconies and other EEE, from also providing repair services on what they had inspected.  In other words, for multi-unit residential apartment buildings (which are governed by Senate Bill 721), contractors could not both inspect, and then repair, balconies and other EEEs.

However, this prohibition proved to be cumbersome and unworkable, especially in light of how many inspections are required to be performed across the state, and in September 2021, Senate Bill 607 was signed into law, which eliminated the prohibition on having a contractor perform both inspections and repair work on balconies and other EEEs at multi-unit residential apartment buildings!

California’s Balcony Inspection Law Changes Recap

California’s Balcony Inspection Law SB 721

  • Relates to commercial apartment buildings
  • Safety inspection is required by January 1, 2025, and thereafter, at least every 6 years
  • Safety inspection must be done by a licensed architect, civil / structural engineer, or a specialty-license building contractor
  • The inspector must review the structural integrity of balconies and other EEEs, which include, among others: decks, stairways, and walkways (including supports, railings, and associated waterproofing elements) that: (a) rely in whole or in part on wood structural supports; (b) are elevated more than six feet above ground level; and (c) are designed for human occupancy or use
  • Building contractor may both inspect and repair balconies and other EEE

And if you are interested, check out a neat pictorial depiction of a “Decision Tree” on whether your building is subject to the Balcony Inspection Laws.

Don’t delay – line up your balcony inspection today!  As the inspection due date looms closer, the small numbers of inspectors, engineers, and qualified balcony repair contractors in the Greater Los Angeles area, will be struggling to cope with inspecting and repairing thousands of apartment and condo buildings!  This means inspection fees and construction repair costs will soar, the closer you get to the inspection deadline!

call Weinstein Construction today at (888) 412-8363 to schedule your free “California Balcony Law” consultation!  Take advantage of lower prices today and get help in planning for this important and mandatory inspection program!

PS – Are you shopping for a Los Angeles Condominium?

Are you in the market to purchase a Los Angeles condo unit?  If so, you must read our blog on how California’s mandatory Balcony Inspection Laws may cost you big time, if you’re not careful!