Solstice Insider

See Douglas County Building Inspector Comments for your Home

If you are looking to build a new home in Solstice, I know that you will be very interested in status updates on your home and ensuring that it is being built properly. While Shea will communicate regular updates and has supervisors checking the work, it can be good to get a second opinion.

I always recommend homeowners get a third party inspection, but it can also be useful (or at the very least, interesting) to read the comments that the county inspectors have. Douglas County follows the International Residential Code, which requires regular inspections during the building process to ensure the home is built to code. These inspections will be completed in many stages and any issues will be posted as part of the public record.

Inspector comments on a home in Solstice
Inspector comments on a home in Solstice

To get started, visit the Douglas County online permit search tool. This resource is designed to help you easily find building permits, inspection schedules, and importantly for new homeowners, inspection comments.

Step-by-Step on How to Search for Inspection Comments

Search by Address: You'll need either the permit number associated with your property or the property address. In your case, enter the address of your new home.

View Inspection Results: Once you have entered the required information, the results will display any permits filed as well as the history of inspections that have taken place, including the comments from the inspectors. In your case, there should only be one permit, which is the initial building permit for your lot.

Understanding Inspection Comments: Take the time to carefully review the inspection comments. If there is no comment for an inspection, that means that everything passed! For large inspections like your rough frame, rough electric, or final inspections, there will likely be a few items on the list.

The inspectors will use some shorthand and construction jargon when writing comments. Here are what some common abbreviations mean:

  • NEC: National Electric Code (Douglas county now uses the 2023 version. The inspector may refer to a specific requirement of the code)
  • IRC: International Residential Code (They use the 2021 version)
  • DWV: Drain-waste-vent (The non-pressurized waste section of your plumbing)
  • HVAC: Heating, Ventilation, Air-Conditioning (This is your AC/furnace and ductwork)
  • NP: Nail plate (likely asking for nail-plates to be added to a stud to protect a wire that is off-center)
  • LVL: Laminated veneer lumber (A large beam composed of laminated layers of lumber. Joists are connected to this and framers can forget to nail them properly)
  • NM: Non-metallic cable (The standard type of wire used inside your home)
  • ECG: Equipment grounding conductor (Something may not have been grounded)
  • PEX: Refers to the pressurized section of your plumbing. This is a flexible plastic pipe that is used instead of copper these days.
  • FP: Front porch
  • LV: Low-volt (referring to low-voltage wiring such as ethernet or cable lines)
  • GC: General contractor (likely referring to your supervisor)
  • UFER: Ufer Ground. Rather than using a grounding rod as seen on older homes, the home is grounded by connecting to the rebar mesh enclosed in the concrete.

Follow-up Actions: Make note of the issues and make sure they are fixed next time you visit your lot. It's not uncommon for developers to fix some issues but overlook others. (While failed inspections will be re-inspected, sometimes the inspector will also miss items, or "approve" the inspection but tell the developer to fix 1-2 minor issues without verification). Also note that the county is largely checking for code compliance, ensuring that the home is safe. Cosmetic issues like cracked cabinets, scratched surfaces, and uneven finishes are not their concern. This is why I always recommend having a third party inspection by an inspector who works for you.

Wrapping Up

Buying a new construction home in Solstice should be an exciting journey, not a stressful one. With the Douglas County Building Department's permit search tool, you have a convenient way to keep tabs on the construction process and inspections of your future home.

Should you require any assistance with understanding the inspection process, or if you're looking into purchasing a home in Solstice and want an expert's insight, don't hesitate to reach out to me. I'm here to support you every step of the way to ensure your home buying experience is as smooth and informed as possible.

Let's find your new home!

Chris is a real estate agent who specializes in helping clients build, buy, and sell homes. Here are some benefits I offer to new construction clients:

  • Projected Budget of Your New Home
  • Pre-Drywall Inspection
  • 3D Matterport Model
  • On-Site Photos During Construction
  • Lot Selection & Design Center Consultations
  • Full Service Realtor Services

Remember, the builder pays my commission, so these benefits are available at no cost to you!

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