Building codes establish the minimum requirements for building, remodeling or maintaining buildings to ensure the health and safety of occupants. When a new building goes up or an existing building gets renovated, the builder must follow the codes to design and complete the work.
Building code enforcement typically falls under the jurisdiction of building officials from the local government. The local building department reviews plans and inspects the completed work to ensure compliance with the codes. While state and local jurisdictions have the power to create and enforce their own codes, many follow the International Code Council standards. These include the International Building Code, International Residential Code and International Existing Building Code.