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Subject: Mandatory Fire Sprinkler Inspection?
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Author Messages
DonS19
(California)

Posts:1


07/20/2021 5:01 PM  
Hey guys, just had a quick question.

My HOA is telling all residents that we HAVE to allow fire inspectors in to our privately owned condo to perform a fire sprinkler inspection, and that doesn't seem right to me. I shouldn't have to allow anyone into my home that I own for any kind inspection, and I don't feel like it's my HOA's place to tell me what I have to do in that regard. Am I wrong to think that way, and is this something that is considered "legal" for them to require of me?

This is my first time being a part of an HOA and I'm lost here. Any help or insight would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

-Don
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:701


07/20/2021 5:10 PM  
For a fire sprinkler inspection you will need to let them in.
AugustinD


Posts:961


07/20/2021 5:22 PM  
Posted By DonS19 on 07/20/2021 5:01 PM
My HOA is telling all residents that we HAVE to allow fire inspectors in to our privately owned condo to perform a fire sprinkler inspection, and that doesn't seem right to me. I shouldn't have to allow anyone into my home that I own for any kind inspection, and I don't feel like it's my HOA's place to tell me what I have to do in that regard. Am I wrong to think that way, and is this something that is considered "legal" for them to require of me?
The COA's insurer may very well have set this requirement. If so, it is to keep the HOA's insurance premiums as low as possible and so your monthly assessment as low as possible.

Chances are good that a fair reading of your COA's covenants do allow the COA to enter your unit. Good COA boards and COA managers coordinate with the owner some on the time of entry.
DouglasK1
(Florida)

Posts:1631


07/20/2021 5:32 PM  
Your CCRs or other governing docs probably give the association access rights for both emergency repairs and other maintenance/inspections. The latter might require advance notice, emergency repairs probably not. In the case of sprinklers, inspections might be required by law so the association wouldn't have any leeway if they wanted to.

Escaped former treasurer and director of a self managed association.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:8290


07/20/2021 6:05 PM  
I honestly can’t say “who” the agency is but the inspections of fire sprinklers are required for the safety of all in the building. The inspection takes 10 minutes at most depending on your condos’ size.

Your board or assn.has no choice. We’re given a few days’ notice about the approximate time the inspector will arrive in my unit.

If sprinkler heads are covered with paint, or soffits added that blocks them, etc., it’s a hazard to other units. In our condo building, if repairs are needed, the unit owner pays and must show evidence that the work was a completed.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10364


07/20/2021 8:35 PM  
So your saying you want to be that one unit when the building catches fire to NOT know if your sprinkler system works in your unit? Am I missing a common sense thing here? I mean if they are inspecting for issues, I'd like to know if my unit would pass or fail. Plus no one is looking at your crap in your house. They have a job to do. Your personal life is your own. It's a building being inspected not your life...

Former HOA President
BillH10
(Texas)

Posts:737


07/20/2021 8:57 PM  
Well, Don, what is your response to the comment which have been posted?
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:701


07/20/2021 9:06 PM  
Posted By MelissaP1 on 07/20/2021 8:35 PM
So your saying you want to be that one unit when the building catches fire to NOT know if your sprinkler system works in your unit? Am I missing a common sense thing here? I mean if they are inspecting for issues, I'd like to know if my unit would pass or fail. Plus no one is looking at your crap in your house. They have a job to do. Your personal life is your own. It's a building being inspected not your life...



Completely uncalled for!
CathyA3
(Ohio)

Posts:2154


07/21/2021 4:42 AM  
I agree with the others: you must allow these inspections, and your CC&Rs may have some language in them about the association being required to maintain health and safety standards in your buildings. What do you suppose would be the consequences for the association if you had a fire and the sprinkler system failed, resulting in significant property loss and even injury/death? I bet it would involve lawyers...

We get fined by the local fire department and our insurer gets all frowny-faced at us if we're not inspected yearly.
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:4062


07/21/2021 4:48 AM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 07/20/2021 9:06 PM
Posted By MelissaP1 on 07/20/2021 8:35 PM
So your saying you want to be that one unit when the building catches fire to NOT know if your sprinkler system works in your unit? Am I missing a common sense thing here? I mean if they are inspecting for issues, I'd like to know if my unit would pass or fail. Plus no one is looking at your crap in your house. They have a job to do. Your personal life is your own. It's a building being inspected not your life...



Completely uncalled for!



Maybe, but it's true - and we know that saying about the truth hurts. It's not like these inspectors are going to be in the house forever. There are 24 hours in a day that all of us get, and since this is about safety, I don't see why the OP can't work with the board in scheduling an inspection.

Besides, in light of Surfside, I would think anyone who lives in a high-rise condo would want the board to be vigilant in ensuring everyone's safety, whether it's a sprinkler system, the plumbing, or the elevator. Are people really this daft????


MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10364


07/21/2021 6:11 AM  
The truth is the truth. So what if their sprinklers do not work and they have a fire? The insurance may not pay out if find out not in compliance with inspections.

Surfside did not just happen. It happened because people did not want to be inconvenienced. Be it for an inspection or pay a special assessment. Actions or lack of action has consequences.

Former HOA President
AugustinD


Posts:961


07/21/2021 6:28 AM  
I agree with SheliaH and MelissaP1. The words used were fine in the context of the entire thread.
JanineR
(Tennessee)

Posts:154


07/22/2021 11:30 AM  
I respect my rights for privacy. And am a stickler for wording.

But I have no issue with the annual sprinkler inspection that happens each year at our condos, even if the language in our CCR's is not entirely correct to allow that. The annual sprinkler inspection gets a pass from me. Because it is SO important.


In our case at our condos in Tennessee, it takes minutes per unit. The property manager provides access, but stands outside, and the fire inspector goes inside and looks at the sprinklers. The property manager, still outside, records it on a clip board. There is no mention of dishes that have not been loaded yet, dirty laundry, or a house plant that could maybe do with a little more water this week.
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