Landlords-Preparing Your Property for Inspection

HUD regulations require Seminole County Housing to inspect all Housing Choice Units prior to tenants moving into a unit and annually thereafter. This serves the purpose of ensuring the unit is “decent, safe and sanitary” according to federal Housing Quality Standards (HQS).  No unit can be leased unless these standards are met.

In evaluating a prospective unit for suitability, Seminole County Housing looks at the condition of the unit but also the condition of the property site and quality of the surrounding neighborhood.  Seminole County Housing encourages tenants to rent outside of low poverty, high crime areas.

Please note that the following is only a general checklist of HQS requirements.  All city, county and state codes must be followed.  Seminole County Housing will cite and require correction of observable mold and may reject units with lead, asbestos or handicapped accessibility issues.

Building Exterior

  • Roof, gutter, fascia, and foundation wall are all structurally sound and weather tight.
  • Walls are free of peeling paint.
  • Windows work properly, are weather tight and lockable.
  • Units without central air must have screens and the landlord maintains those screens.
  • Stairs with four or more steps have handrails in accordance with building codes.
  • Exterior doors have locks designed for exterior use and of sufficient quality to support the weight of the door.
  • If the building is designed to have gutters, it does, and they are clear of debris. Curbside
  • Lawn and storage areas are free of garbage and debris.
  • Lawn and shrubs are properly edged and trimmed on a regular basis.
  • Limited soil erosion.
  • Fencing, if any, is in good repair.

Systems

  • All utilities are on and operating safely.
  • Water heater is properly installed and operating.
  • Water heater is equipped with a correct temperature-pressure relief valve according to the manufacturer’s specifications, and those specifications are posted near the heater so the inspector can verify them.  A discharge pipe is installed on the valve within six (6) inches of the ground.
  • Plumbing is properly installed, leak-free and vented in accordance with building codes.
  • Heating system is properly installed and operational.
  • Apartment buildings have properly marked fire exits that meet building codes.
  • No exposed wires or open electrical panels.
  • There must be an electrical outlet every twelve (12) feet throughout the dwelling.
  • Pilot lights on gas stoves are in proper working order.

Dwelling Unit

  • Walls are clean, painted and free from holes, peeling, chipping or loose paint.
  • Unit is free of any trash or debris.
  • All appliances  (e.g., stove, refrigerator) are clean, operable and in place at the time of inspection.
  • Each bedroom has an area of at least seven (7) feet x ten (10) feet.
  • Each bedroom has at least two electrical outlets or one electrical outlet and an overhead light.
  • Each bedroom has at least one window that is designed to open far enough to allow a person to exit and the window must operate properly.
  • Stairs with four or more steps have handrails in accordance with building codes.
  • If the unit has two (2) or more bedrooms, the floor plan permits access to the bathrooms and commonly used rooms without passage through a bedroom.
  • Electrical outlets, switches, and light fixtures meet building codes.
  • Bathroom doors have functioning locks.
  • Interior bedroom and bathroom doors are installed throughout the unit.
  • Smoke alarms are installed on each level of the unit near the bedrooms and are operational.
  • Carpet and rugs are clean and free of tears/trip hazards.
  • Ceilings are free from large cracks or holes, severe bulging, and loose or falling surface material.
  • Security bars, if provided, are a properly installed breakaway type.
  • Window and doors are operable and are not blocked, nailed shut or in any other condition that would prevent exit.
  • Unit is free of mold and mildew.
  • No propane, natural or methane gas odor is detectable.
  • No sewer odor is detectable.
  • No evidence of insect or vermin presence