The Department of Buildings recently announced the expansion of its Summer No-Penalty Inspection Program, providing property owners and landlords with an opportunity to assess the condition of their buildings and address potential repair projects. The program runs until July 31 and allows participants to benefit from expert guidance and proactive maintenance without incurring penalties.

The context: By law, building owners in New York City are required to maintain their properties in a safe and code-compliant condition at all times, which includes maintaining all building structures and device equipment on the property.

The program was first launched in 2005, and the DOB has performed thousands of inspections through the program, helping property owners citywide make their buildings safer. The DOB first added accessory business signs to the program in 2020, offering this service to business owners at no cost and without risk of penalty.

Each year, Department inspectors respond to serious incidents involving facades, boilers, private elevators, business signs, retaining walls, and decks across the five boroughs, which result in serious injuries and even deaths. This year’s new addition of free inspections of facades, unregistered boilers, and unregistered private elevators is the largest expansion of the program to date.

What you need to know: For the first year ever, DOB has added building facades, boilers, and private elevators to the inspection program. During the scheduled inspection DOB inspectors will also be available to discuss any additional building concerns that the property owners may have, and direct them on how to obtain additional assistance from the Department.

Property owners can call 311 to request an inspection of any of the following building structures and equipment:

  • Decks and Patios
  • Retaining Walls
  • Facades for Buildings Under 6 Stories in Height
  • Business Signs
  • Unregistered Boilers
  • Unregistered Private Elevator Devices

During the inspection, buildings inspectors can give expert opinions on potential repair projects, guidance on applicable legal requirements, and will be available to discuss additional building concerns with property owners. Inspectors can also provide information about how to receive further assistance from DOB.

Following the property inspection, DOB will notify property owners of any findings. If inspectors find any violating conditions, inspectors will not issue violations that carry associated penalties for a limited time, instead providing guidance on how to correct the conditions, and giving the owners the opportunity to make corrective repairs to make their property safe.


July 12, 2023 — The Habitat Group