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Key Biscayne Building recertification guide news

Key Biscayne Building recertifications explained

In the wake of the tragic collapse of the Champlain Towers South in Surfside last year, Miami-Dade County is moving forward with new recertification regulations for condos and tall buildings in Key Biscayne and the rest of Florida. This has prompted Key Biscayne building owners and homeowners associations to take a closer look at ensuring the safety and security of their structures. 

The process involves inspections by a licensed engineer or architect and can cause potential penalties for non-compliance. While these measures are crucial for safety, they also highlight the need for effective communication and coordination between building owners, associations, and local authorities. 

Key Biscayne’s commitment to ensuring building safety underscores the importance of proactive measures in safeguarding residents and communities. As regulations evolve and safety standards are enforced, residents are encouraged to stay informed and actively participate in the recertification process to ensure the continued safety and well-being of their buildings. In this article we will go over some of the new condominium laws in Florida and how they apply to Key Biscayne. We would be happy to be your Building Inspector in Key Biscayne.

What are the new Condo Inspection laws in Key Biscayne

Under these new guidelines, buildings over 3 stories tall that are 3,500 square feet or more would need recertification every 25 years, instead of the previous 40-year inspection requirement. You are probably asking what about the 30-year inspection, isn’t the new law every 30 years? Well, since Key Biscayne is less than 3 miles from the coast all buildings require the reinspection process after 25 years. I will explain this further in the next article.

The new Building Safety Inspection program also referred to as milestone inspections states that if your building is more than 3 miles from the coast your inspection is required once your building reaches 30 years of age. However, if your building is less than 3 miles from the coast then it would require the inspection to be done after 25 years. Since Key Biscayne is surrounded by water then every building requires a Building Safety Inspection every 25 years.

Once you’ve completed your first building inspection you will not have to get a reinspection done for 10 years. Every 10 years after your last inspection you will need to have the recertification process completed again. 

Do I need an inspection for my building or structure in Key Biscayne?

South Florida already had an inspection program in place which was called the 40-year inspection and was put into effect in 2005 it exceeded and satisfied all of the new requirements except for one thing. Instead of every 40 years, it is now every 25 years in Key Biscayne. 

According to the new law if your building in Key Biscayne is 3 stories or taller and has at least 3500 square feet then you are required to complete the inspection process. Some buildings are not required to complete this inspection but they are few and far between. 

The Key Biscayne Building department will likely send you a letter in the mail with all of the requirements and regulations you must comply with. However, even if you do not receive the letter you are still liable for carrying out the inspection. 

Not completing the inspection according to the time frame allocated to you by the Key Biscayne building department will result in fees that start from $500 a day. We have listed the Key Biscayne Building department’s website and contact info below so you can reach them if you have specific questions regarding these inspections. 

key biscayne building department logo


88 W McIntyre St, Key Biscayne, FL 33149

(305) 365-5512

[email protected]


7:30am-1:30pm M-T

What if I already did a 40 year Building inspection in Key Biscayne?

If your building is over 40 years old then chances are you have already completed a 40-year inspection. If this is the case you are required to continue with the previous requirements that precede your first inspection which include a recertification every 10 years. One change that you will now apply is the Structural Integrity Reserve Study. This is another new requirement which requires an engineer to inspect the current condition of your building and calculate what the future maintenance cost of repairing and maintaining your building will be.  

What buildings in Key Biscayne do not require a Building Safety Inspection?

As stated previously there are some building in Key Biscayne which are exempt from the building safety inspection program which are the following:

  • State of Florida buildings
  • US government buildings
  • 1 to 2-story family dwellings
  • Schools under the jurisdiction of Miami-Dade County School Board
  • Buildings built on indigenous tribe reservations
  • Any buildings under 3500 square feet

Who can perform a Building Safety Inspection in Key Biscayne

The only person which can conduct these building safety inspections are licensed engineers or architects. These professionals can conduct and certify your building is in compliance with the county’s new guidelines. The certified professional will look to verify the integrity of the structural and electrical systems of your building in Key Biscayne.  

For the structure, they will verify the foundation, roofs, masonry bearing walls, flooring and roof systems, steel and concrete framing systems, and windows and doors are all structurally sound and do not pose a hazard to residents and the surrounding area. The same engineer or architect will also do the electrical inspection, they will verify your electrical panels are in working order and not hazardes. 

What to do once you complete your Key Biscayne building inspection?

Once an Engineer has inspected your building you will receive a signed and sealed document outlining the inspection process. If you pass the building inspection then you can submit the signed and sealed report to the county requesting it and you are free and clear for another 10 years. If there were problems found in your building such as concrete spalling, cracks in structural columns, or another structural deficiency then you will still need to submit the report. Although a failed report might sound bad, when you submit the report the building department will give you an extension so that you can pull the permits required to get these repairs addressed. 

After the completion of the Milestone Inspection, a comprehensive report detailing the inspector’s findings will be provided to you. It is imperative that you personally submit the full report to your building department, as the inspector does not undertake this responsibility on your behalf. Ensuring compliance rests on your shoulders, and you must submit the report within the specified timeframe stipulated by the city.

Final thought on the Key Biscayne Building Safety Inspection program

The Key Biscayne building safety inspection program can seem like a hassle but it is a crucial public safety program that ensures Buildings are kept in good shape. The collapse that occurred in Surfside was a tragic event and many lives were lost. This program helps prevent events like this from occurring again and will not only provide Key Biscayne condo residents with peace of mind but also help Building Owners mitigate legal risk and excessive maintenance costs from not taking care of structural elements in a building. 

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