For Immediate Release
August 4, 2015


Exposure and Seasonal Weather Changes Can Put Decks and Porches at Risk of Collapse

New Yorkers are Encouraged to Call 311 to Request No Penalty, No Cost Inspections

Buildings Commissioner Rick Chandler today announced the start of the Department's annual No-Penalty Deck and Porch inspection Program, a citywide initiative which allows New Yorkers to call 311 and request a free inspection of their decks and porches. Over time, weather and routine usage can cause these structures to weaken and deteriorate. This program gives homeowners the opportunity to ensure these structures are safe before an accident occurs. If repairs are needed, and the conditions found do not pose an immediate safety hazard, the Department will defer issuing any violations to allow property owners sufficient time to make corrective repairs.

"The Department has already seen a number of deck failures this year, and this program provides the opportunity for homeowners to ensure their property is structurally sound," said Commissioner Chandler. "Failing to maintain decks and porches can easily result in accidents, excessive repair costs and inconvenience to homeowners."

Beginning today, August 4th through September 4th 2015, property owners can request a free inspection of their decks and porches to ensure they are structurally sound and in compliance with all City regulations. During inspections, inspectors will check for weakening conditions, such as cracking, rotting, failed connections and other warning signs that can lead to potential structural failure.

The No-Penalty Deck and Porch inspection Program was first launched in 2010. The program is modeled after the Department's annual No-Penalty Retaining Wall Inspection Program, which allows homeowners to request an inspection of their retaining wall without the penalty of violations.

By law, homeowners are required to maintain their decks, porches and properties in a safe and compliant manner at all times. New Yorkers are encouraged to call 311 to report non-compliant conditions.

For more information visit the Department's web site at

Contact: Alexander Schnell (212) 393-2126
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