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HQS Inspections

HQS Inspections

(Revised 2-2016)

Below is a partial list of some of the conditions that the Housing Inspector must verify. In general, all rooms should be free of electrical hazards, defective paint, and broken windows. Windows that are accessible from outside must lock. There should be an approved smoke detector on each level.

The Inspector will inspect all floors, walls, ceilings, electrical outlets/switches, appliances, plumbing fixtures, mechanisms, closets, cabinets, windows, doors, locks, latches, porches, balconies, railings and test the smoke detector(s).

Living Room

  • Must have at least two outlets or one outlet and one light fixture. 
  • Must have at least one window. Windows and doors must be free from deterioration, gaps, etc.
  • All walls & ceilings must be in good condition and free of hazardous defects, holes, etc.
  • All windows must lock, remain in position, and free from damaged glazing, cracks, etc.
  • All windows that open must have screens that are free of defects, holes, rips, etc.
  • All security bars and windows must have a quick release mechanism. 


  • Must have at least one working outlet and one working permanent light fixture.
  • All walls & ceilings must be in good condition and free of hazardous defects.
  • The refrigerator must have a freezer that works and maintains a temperature low enough to avoid food spoilage (40/30).
  • The faucet must have hot and cold running water, the sink must have a stopper, the faucets must be free of drips, and all faucets must have the hot/cold water designated.
  • The unit must contain a space to store, prepare, and serve food.
  • The unit must contain a stove, refrigerator, and a working oven. All appliances provided must be operable.
  • GFCI required 24 inches from the side of the sink.


  • Must have at least one permanent light fixture.
  • Must have a working sturdy toilet, free of leaks, for the exclusive, private use of the tenant.
  • Must contain a working, permanently installed washbasin with hot and cold running water.
  • Must have a working tub or shower with hot and cold running water.
  • Must have an operable GFCI 36 from the outside edge of the sink basin.
  • Must have a window or functional ventilation system. 

Building Exterior 

  • Check to verify the following areas are free of hazards, holes and moisture infiltration:
    • Foundation
    • Roof, gutters & downspouts
    • Exterior surfaces, stairs, treads, balusters and railings
    • Chimney
  • Garbage must be discarded in proper receptacles
  • Debris must be removed

Heating & Plumbing, General Safety

  • ACHA inspects the following mechanisms:
    • Heating & plumbing equipment for health and safety (proper installation and ventilation)
    • Elevator function, sufficient fire exit, and pest control.
    • To ensure the water heater is properly vented and installed.

General Items
The unit must be empty/vacant from the previous tenancy. The utilities (electric, gas and water) must be in service and all construction, rehabilitation, painting, replacements, debris removal and cleaning must be concluded.

  • The unit is clean, free from garbage, debris, maintenance supplies, etc.
  • The appliances and fixtures are present, operable, and clean.
  • All light fixtures have bulbs and all utilities are in service.
  • The grass and shrubs are trimmed or cut.
  • Carbon Monoxide detectors are required in units containing an attached garage, gas fired appliances or a wood burning fireplace. The device should be located on a wall, 12 inches from the floor on each level.

Most Common Fail Conditions

    • Non-functioning or absent smoke/carbon monoxide detectors 
    • Missing or cracked electrical outlet cover plates 
    • Peeling Paint
    • Railings not present where required
    • Tripping hazards caused by permanent floor coverings
    • Cracked or broken windowpanes
    • Electrical outlets that do not withstand four pounds of pressure
    • Dirty/greasy appliances
    • Inoperable stove burners or range hoods – knobs missing
    • Junction box unsecured/ panel not labeled
    • Missing knock outs
    • Inoperable bathroom fan/no ventilation
    • Leaking faucets/toilets
    • Ungrounded electrical outlets
    • Improperly vented clothes dryers
    • Missing window screens/torn, etc.

After The Inspection

ACHA provides written notification the owner and tenant of the results, usually within five business days. Should the unit fail inspection, ACHA will provide the owner with a list of deficient items and a deadline to make the appropriate repairs. Please inspect the property frequently and make routine repairs as needed to prevent the unit from failing inspection. Each year, ACHA will notify the owner and tenant of the upcoming inspection. It is advisable to ensure the tenant will be home to greet the inspector or arrange to have an adult present. Make sure you and the tenant are prepared for the visit and try to be present to take notes and answer any questions. ACHA strongly suggests the owner or property manager visit the unit to view the condition and make any repairs prior to the annual inspection.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Alexander City Housing Authority
Inspections Team