If someone has reported a problem or hazard on your property, we will send an inspector to investigate it within 72 hours.
If the inspector determines there is a building or housing code violation, they will write a Notice of Violation (NOV) describing the violation and the corrections you need to do.
Read your Notice of Violation
The notice will be posted on your building and be mailed to you shortly after it’s posted.
Check if you need a permit to fix the violation
Check if your construction project needs a permit.
Your Notice of Violation will also tell you if you need a permit to fix the violation, and which permits you need.
File a permit if needed
Depending on the violation, you may need to bring plans when filing for your permits.
You will pay additional fees for the inspections related to the code violation, as noted in your Notice of Violation. If the fees are for work not covered by a permit, you might be able to get your fees lowered by appealing to the Board of Appeals.
Work with your inspector to fix the problem
Follow the corrective actions written in your Notice of Violation. If you have questions, contact the inspector noted on your NOV.
When you are done with the work, schedule a final inspection. If the violation is corrected, your inspector will close the case.
While your case is open, your inspector will follow up with you approximately every 30 days to check your progress.
Go to a Director’s Hearing
If you have not tried to resolve the code violation and we do not hear from you, we will move your case to a Director’s Hearing. From this point, abatement fees will add up until you fix the problem.
We will post a Notice of Director’s Hearing on your building, and also send the notice by certified mail. The notice will include your hearing date and time.
The hearing officer will decide whether to uphold the violation, and issue a Director’s Notice of Abatement requiring you to correct the problem.
If there is still a problem, see Director’s Order of Abatement
The Director’s Order of Abatement will contain:
- The Order Number
- The name of the property owner, the address, and the Assessor’s block/lot of the property
- The field inspector and division who issued the initial Notice of Violation
- The amount of time you have to apply for permits, call for inspection, and complete all corrective work mentioned on your original Notice of Violation
- Information about paying code abatement costs
- Information about appealing
If you do not win an appeal, we will record the Director’s Order of Abatement at the Recorder’s Office. It will also be placed on the land records of the property in violation.
File an appeal to the Abatement Appeals Board
If you want to appeal the Director's Order of Abatement, you must file that appeal within 15 days of when the Order was posted on your property, or when it was postmarked (whichever is later).
Fix the problem
Follow the correction actions detailed in your original Notice of Violation.
If you have questions, contact the inspector on your Notice of Violation.
Pay abatement fees
You must reimburse the Department of Building Inspection for hearing and abatement fees in order to close your case. The fee covers staff time managing your case.
The longer the case is open, the more fees add up.
Get a lien on your property
If you do not fix the violation by the date mentioned in your Order of Abatement, we will place a lien against your property. The lien will appear on public records. Your property can have multiple liens against it if you have multiple violations.
Having a lien on the property can make it very hard to refinance or sell.
If you have more than 3 liens or Orders of Abatement against your property, we may refer your case to the City Attorney.
Last updated September 15, 2022