Unlike banking and healthcare, the construction industry isn’t heavily regulated by the federal government. Rather, building codes are enacted at the state, county and local levels.
Every three years, the International Code Council updates its International Building Code (IBC) and International Residential Code (IRC) – and the latter applies to specific types of construction such as single-family homes and duplexes. “Our code development process is on a three-year cycle in order to incorporate the latest technology and advances into the model codes, and we encourage all jurisdictions to update the codes on a three-year cycle as well,” says Whitney Doll, ICC’s director of communications. “There are various reasons why some states do not keep up with this cycle, including lack of resources – both staff and financial.” States like New Hampshire, Tennessee and Connecticut often lag two or more cycles behind the current I-codes.
The adoption process varies widely from state to state. There are a number of states that are poster children for prompt I-code adoption, including Maryland, Washington and West Virginia. Some states (like Maryland) even have a legislative state mandate for code review and adoption so that there’s no procrastination. And some states adopt a single state wide set of codes while others allow local jurisdictions to control the adoption process. The Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission is responsible for all code adoptions in the Hoosier State. In Nebraska, the state legislature updates the building codes, and local jurisdictions cannot make amendments that are more restrictive than the state codes. Kansas has no statewide codes, allowing local jurisdictions to call the shots
There is a provision in the 2018 IRC that LP® FlameBlock® Fire-Rated Sheathing can help address: a code change that gives builders the option to separate townhouses with either a common wall or two fire-rated walls.
The bottom line: most states aren’t in a hurry to conform to the most current I-codes. Louisiana requires adoption within five years of the code publication date, which means it might take until 2023 for that state to adopt the 2018 I-codes.
You can learn more about the 2018 I-codes and the status of state adoptions by visiting www.iccsafe.org.
In recent years, sheds have become popular for uses beyond practical storage solutions, like a place to put holiday decorations during the off-season. You may know them as she sheds, man caves, hobby sheds, home offices and even backyard bars. Whatever your customers’ needs, sheds offer multifunctional versatility that can help bring them to life in unique ways.Continue Reading
Most re-siding projects are on older homes, so it’s a good bet you’ve seen your share of asbestos siding if you operate in the business of siding renovations. Asbestos is a silicate mineral that was commonly added to cement board siding for durability and resistance to fire and weather during the 1920s to 1980s.
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On custom homes, builders and developers sometimes avoid value-added building materials for a variety of reasons. They might veto those products if the upfront cost is more expensive than standard materials, when in fact the value-added solutions can often lower the long-term cost of ownership for the buyers. In addition, they might fear that crews aren’t as familiar with the value-added materials, which could add to construction time or impact proper installation.