Inspections

Building Safety Compliance Officials and Review Staff  work collaboratively with property owners and contractors to ensure the safety and code compliance of building environments and systems. Compliance Officials visit each job site to confirm that all state laws and regulations, as well as all local ordinances, are followed; they ensure building safety and the safety of electrical, plumbing, and mechanical systems. The work of the Building Safety team protects the health, welfare, and property of the citizens of New Hanover County.

At a minimum, the Administrative Code and Policies (2012 North Carolina Administrative Code) used for inspections require the following inspections for new construction and additions:

  1. Footing Inspection
  2. Under slab inspection, as appropriate
  3. Foundation inspection, wood-frame construction
  4. Rough-in inspection
  5. Building framing
  6. Insulation inspection
  7. Fire protection inspection
  8. Final inspection

Inspections for alterations/remodel work in existing buildings will depend on the scope of work and the issued permit.

New Hanover County accepts inspection requests via email to more efficiently serve county citizens. Inspection requests can be emailed to inspectionrequests@nhcgov.com.

Inspection requests may also be submitted:

Note: All inspection requests received before 3:30 p.m. will be scheduled for the next business day. Requests received after 3:30 p.m. will be scheduled for the day after the next business day. Normal working hours for the Inspections staff are 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday-Friday except county holidays, however after hours inspections are available by special request.

Although inspections are scheduled as described above, they are subject to workload. Inspectors prioritize re-inspections when arriving in an area that has follow-up inspections and first-time inspections.

The Building Code requires inspections for work done to walls, floors, ceilings, roof support systems, structural elements, and other building components.

Current building codes and regulations in effect:

The types of Building Inspections depend on the scope of work for new construction or work on an existing building. When inspecting new construction or additions for framing, the following items shall be in place and visible for inspection:

  • Pipes
  • Chimneys and vents
  • Flashing for roofs, chimneys and wall openings
  • Insulation baffles
  • All lintels that are required to be bolted to the framing for support must not be covered by any exterior or interior wall or ceiling finish material before approval.

For questions, please contact the Building Chief, Andrew Bankowski, by email at Abankowski@nhcgov.com or by phone at 910-798-7354.

The Electrical Code requires inspections for work done related to the installation or changes to service, power source, power supply, service upgrades, electrical wiring, conductors, equipment, and electrical work included in mechanical or plumbing or building systems.

Current electrical codes and regulations in effect:

The types of Electrical Inspections may include those for wiring and protection, wiring methods and materials, equipment for general use, Special Hazards, Special Equipment, Special Conditions, and communication systems. At a minimum, for new construction, there are inspections for rough-in.

The Electrical Inspections team also investigates complaints of electrical hazards and assist field representatives from the North Carolina State Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors in resolving complaints that citizens or aggrieved parties have registered with the Board’s office.

Note: The Building Safety Department responds to emergency electrical inspections. Emergency electrical inspections should be scheduled as soon as possible with the Electrical Chief, Jimmy Shivar. He can be reached by email at  Jshivar@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-660-1791.  His assistant, Brad Shoaf, can also be reached by email at electricalcodes@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-660-1850.

For questions, please contact the Electrical Chief, Jimmy Shivar, by email at Jshivar@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910- 798-7205.

The Mechanical Code requires inspections for work that relates to mechanical systems and as specified in the code. These include gas, heating, air-conditioning, exhaust, kitchen hood, ventilation, duct, chimneys and vents, specific appliances, fireplaces, fuel-burning equipment, boilers and pressure vessels, refrigeration systems, hydronic piping, fuel oil piping and storage, and solar systems. The Fuel Gas Code may also apply for work that relates to the list above, and could include pipe sizing, piping materials, and piping system installation for fuel gas systems and for gaseous hydrogen systems and their testing procedures.

Current mechanical codes and regulations in effect:

The types of mechanical inspections and inspections from the Fuel Gas Code may depend on the scope of work for new construction or work on an existing building. The inspections may include those for:

  • Under slab inspection
  • Crawl space inspection
  • Rough-in inspection (required when building framing is in place)
  • Final inspection

For questions, please contact the Mechanical and Plumbing Chief, Arthur Malpass, by email at Amalpass@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-660-1439.

The Plumbing Code requires inspections for work that relates to plumbing systems and as specified in the code. These include water and sewer, sanitary drainage, storm drainage, direct and indirect waste, water supply and distribution, piping sizing and piping supports and their protection, fixtures, faucets and fixture fittings, water heaters, vents, traps and interceptors, recycling systems, and drainage systems.

Current  plumbing code and regulations in effect:

The types of Plumbing Inspections may depend on the scope of work for new construction or work on an existing building. The inspections may include those for:

  • Under slab inspection
  • Crawl space inspection
  • Rough-in inspection (required when building framing is in place)
  • Final inspection

For questions, please contact the Mechanical and Plumbing Chief, Arthur Malpass, by email at Amalpass@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-660-1439.

The Building Safety Department performs administrative inspections on premises. The department makes these types of inspections to investigate and gather evidence on non-compliance to the codes and regulations of the county.

Current codes and regulations in effect:

The department performs these administrative inspections following the complaints received from the general public, or when there is knowledge of possible violations on properties within the county’s jurisdiction. The administrative inspections may require that the property owner immediately take the corrective action(s) to remedy the violations on the premises.

For questions, please contact the Assistant Director, Hans Schult, by email at HSchult@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-798-7008.

The Building Safety Department performs fire safety inspections for new construction, additions, and alterations to existing buildings. These types of inspections include those for fire sprinklers, standpipes, fire alarm systems, kitchen hood systems, smoke alarm systems, fire lanes and other fire service features.

Current codes and regulations in effect:

The work requiring inspections shall be according to the requirements in Sections 106.2, 106.2.1, 106.2.2, 106.3 and 106.4 of the 2012 North Carolina Fire Prevention Code.

For questions, please contact Tom Sosebee, Fire Plan Review Code Compliance Official, by email at Firecodes@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-660-1879.

The Building Safety Department performs Property Upkeep Inspections on premises within the county’s jurisdiction. The department makes these types of inspections in follow up to complaints received from the general public regarding the conditions of buildings and unsafe buildings.

Current codes and regulations in effect:

The inspections may require that the property owner immediately take the corrective action(s) to remedy the violations on the premises. The department has authority to bring judicial actions against violations.

For questions, please contact the Assistant Director, Hans Schult, by email at HSchult@nhcgov.com, or by phone at 910-798-7008.

Building Safety: 230 Government Center Dr, Suite 170 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7308 • Fax 910-798-7811