The city code inspectors came today for the first inspection of framing (attic and deck) and wiring (fire alarms in series, which we have to do because we’re having any electrical work done, so-o-o-o, since we’re adding some wiring to the attic, we have to spend an extra several hundred dollars to bring our 1937 house up to 2009 code standards). Our contractor, Tom, was sitting out in his truck waiting for them for 3 hours. (Just fyi, he was absolutely welcome to hang around in our house, but it was his choice to stay outside in the cold).
I stayed out of the way (for once). The electrical inspector left first, telling me everything looked very good. Then the main inspector left, so I asked Tom how it went, and he said, “Not good.” Oh, sh*t. What? The main inspector, Jesus, told him 50% of the space we were planning to finish out needed to be 7 feet high or higher (and it’s not!), or we wouldn’t be allowed to finish it out! Well, we weren’t really planning on raising our roof or installing huge dormers, so all the work we have been doing and all the work we were planning on completing in the next week or so has been for nought?
Luckily, after making some calls to other inspectors, Jesus came back to let us know he was wrong, and that in fact we were allowed to do what we planned; however, we can never put in a permanent style staircase to the attic, unless we are prepared for a whole other level of construction (and inspections). Our plan is merely to create some improved storage space after all, not a living space! Sheesh!