The Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) Proactive Inspections program ensures all multi-unit rental properties in the District of Columbia are inspected. Previously, all residential building-wide inspections were completed only after receiving a series of complaints from tenants. Now all of the estimated 4,300-plus non-exempt multi-family rental properties in the District of Columbia will be inspected whether or not DCRA ever receives a complaint.
The Proactive Inspections program does not mean you cannot request inspections for your particular unit. For more information on requesting an inspection for your unit immediately, please go back to Housing Code Inspections. Have more questions?
To ensure your building is safe and meets city codes, it is essential that we get into as many units in your building as possible. If tenants cannot be present at the inspection, please complete the Proactive Inspection Consent Form.
DCRA has also translated the Proactive Inspection form for property owners and managers:
Scheduling Your Inspection
All inspection schedules and consent forms are located at the bottom of this page under related documents.
Percentage of Units to be Inspected
All multi-family rental property owners will receive a letter and a proactive inspection date. The compliance inspection includes exterior, interior common area, and unit inspections. As a building owner, you or your agent, are required to provide inspectors entry into a percentage of your building's units.
Refer to the table below to determine how many units inspectors must enter. Inspectors must visit at least one unit from each floor and the basement (if applicable). If inspectors cannot access all common areas and the required number of units, the building will not pass the compliance inspection.
|Total Units in Buildings
||Total Units Needed to Pass Inspection
|3 to 4
|5 to 49
Details on Inspections
DCRA inspectors can only enter units for which building owners or managers have secured a tenant-signed Inspection Consent Form. Building owners or managers are responsible for collecting signed tenant consent forms prior to unit inspections. Please call the Inspections Division at (202) 481-3524 between 9 am and 4 pm at least 15 days prior to your scheduled inspection to verify that you have signed consent forms for required unit inspections.
Compliance inspections are valid for up to five years depending on the condition of the rental property. For an overview of what our inspectors will be looking for and a guide to common code violations, minor violations, and the compliance inspection process, visit our Housing Code Inspections page.
An owner or agent must be on the premises during the inspection. If you cannot attend a scheduled compliance inspection, and do not reschedule the inspection within 24 hours of your appointment, your building will automatically fail the inspection and be placed on a 2 year proactive inspection cycle.
Is Your Property Licensed?
Part of the Proactive Inspections process is determining if the multi-family rental property has the appropriate business license. All multi-family rental properties with at least 3 units are required to have an Apartment License.
DCRA has also created an online application for renters to see if their landlord is licensed - either by address or property owner.
Start Your Online Search Here
Use drop down menu and select Apartment
or check out the property on PIVS.
Proactive Inspection Fees
Beginning October 1, 2009, the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs began charging all residential rental properties a $35.00 per unit fee up to a $2,000.00 maximum per building or complex for the Proactive Inspections program. The fee funds the cost of the new program and not tied to a specific inspection. If you are the owner of a multi-family rental property, your property will be inspected at least once during the five year program.
The program is designed to ensure all rental units in the District of Columbia meet residential property maintenance and building codes.
To reschedule your inspection or discuss tenant consent issues, please contact DCRA Inspection Division:
Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs
1100 4th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20024
(202) 481-3524 phone
(202) 478-5751 fax