Baltimore City Rental Inspections

Looking To Renew Your Rental License in Baltimore City?

Baltimore City requires all rental properties to be inspected by a licensed home inspector that is registered with the Baltimore City Department of Housing & Community Developments.  A landlord will be able obtain a one to three year license depending on the maintenance & violation history of the property.

What Do We Check In Our Baltimore City Rental Inspections?

In a Baltimore City Rental Inspection

We follow a specific guideline that is required by Baltimore City. Unlike a home inspection, Baltimore City Rental Inspections are based on a pass/fail. We are also required to use the form that is provided by Baltimore City for you to obtain or renew your rental license. Below is a checklist of items that are inspected. You can also check inspector guidance form to familiarize yourself with the process.

Baltimore City Rental Inspection Checklist Items

  • Railings – Must be present for interior and exterior steps with more than 3 risers. Must be securely attached
  • Electrical – Live wires must not be visible within living areas. They must be concealed behind walls.
      • A. Electrical outlets are protected by cover plates.  We will inspect all accessible outlets 
  • Smoke Detectors – Properly installed and operational. Additional requirements must be met depending on when the property was built.
  • Carbon Monoxide Alarms –  Properly installed and operational.
      • A. Required in properties with fossil fuel-burning equipment/appliances, fireplaces, wood stove or attached garage
      • B. Installed outside of each separate dwelling’s sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of the sleeping room
      • C. On every occupiable level of the dwelling’s unit, including basements. Not including crawlspaces and attics
  • Plumbing Fixtures – They must not leak. Tubs and sinks must be able to drain.
  • Windows – When designed to do so, should be able to open and close and have a working locking mechanism
      • A. This includes all windows, storms windows, wooden window, etc.
      • B. Windows are functional, good condition and in good repair
      • C. Windows used for ventilations must be able to open and close with a working locking mechanism.
      • D. For areas with windows that are not designed to open and close, there must be a source of mechanical ventilation present and in working condition.
  • Heating Supply System – Must be operational.
Single Family Dwelling

Below is a list of items that must be checked. If we see any concerns with any of these items, we are required to contact the Baltimore City’s Department of Housing and Community Development for further review/evaluation.

  • Cleanliness – The interior of the property is clean and sanitary
  • Rodents – The exterior of the property is free of rodent burrows
  • Bedroom Basement – If there is a bedroom in the basement, there is a proper egress in case of fire.
  • Other Concerns – Any other concerns that is an immediate threat to the occupant’s health and safety must be made aware.

Baltimore City Rental Inspection Multi-Family Dwelling Checklist Items

If the rental property is a multi-family dwelling (MFD), then additional items are required to be inspected. Below are the additional items required to be inspected for MFDs. Not all units in a MFD will be inspected. The number of units to be inspected is dependent on the number of units within the property.

Multi-Family Dwelling
  • Hallways & Stairways – Public hallways & stairways are free of obstructions.
      • A. All methods of egress from the unit to the outside of the building are free of obstructions
  • Fire Separation – Intact between dwellings, hallways, & stairways
      • A. No holes in walls or ceilings 
  • Fire Alarms – Operational
      • A. Fire alarm is considered to be in working order via visual confirmation of the presence of a current inspection sticker completed within the last 12 months. 
  • Exit Signs – Installed and clearly visible
  • Mechanical Room – Must have proper clearance and not used for storage
  • Electrical Room – Must have proper clearance
  • Multi-Family License – Must be visible in a common area
      • If there is a rental office, then the license can be posted in the office.

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Take a Look at a Sample Report

Get an idea of the format and items that would be listed under a Residential Home Inspection.