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HOUSING QUALITY STANDARDS
Acceptability Criteria Variations

These ACV were adopted by the Gastonia Housing Authority, Gastonia, NC from local codes of the city of Gastonia. Any specific reference to local or State code was removed since staff of the GHA Section 8 Inspections Department are not trained to inspect to specific codes. Rather, general requirements were adopted in these cases.

Socialserve.com gratefully acknowledges this contribution by the Gastonia Housing Authority
and reminds property providers that other Housing Authorities may have differing rules.

AS ALWAYS, PLEASE CHECK WITH YOUR LOCAL
HOUSING AUTHORITY FOR SPECIFIC COMPLIANCE INFORMATION

General

  • All repairs and alteration made to any dwelling or dwelling unit must be installed in the manner in which it was intended to be installed; and, all work must exhibit quality workmanship.
  • All dwellings, dwelling units and rooming houses must display house numbers as assigned and required by the local jurisdiction. They must be of sufficient size and location to be readily visible from the street.
  • No utility service is provided to any dwelling that is in violation of the minimum housing standards for the locality.

Plumbing

  • All plumbing (under house and inside walls) must be in a state of good repair and in working order.
  • Water temperature of not more than 120 degrees and not less than 100 degrees
  • Refrigerators temperatures must be between 34-38 degrees Fahrenheit.

Ventilation

  • Every habitable room shall have a window facing directly to the outdoors, (habitable room shall include: bedroom, living-room and kitchen)
  • Minimum window area shall be 8% of floor area. Windows within 5 feet of a wall or partition is not considered facing directly outdoors and not counted as required window openings.
  • Every habitable room must have at least one window, which can be easily opened.
  • Every bathroom and water closet shall comply with light and ventilation requirements of a habitable room or be equipped with approved mechanical ventilation.

Electrical

  • Every habitable room must contain at least two floor or wall type convenience receptacles. (If a switch controlled receptacle, it must in addition to the required number of receptacles.)
  • All receptacles must be properly grounded. The following shall apply (ASSUMING FULL COMPLIANCE WITH ALL APPLICABLE CODES):
    1. Two-wire ungrounded systems with two-prong receptacles are acceptable;
    2. Two-wire ungrounded systems with three-prong receptacles are non-complying and unacceptable. Any three-prong receptacle on a two-wire ungrounded system must be properly supplied through a GFCI.
  • Every bathroom must have a convenience wall type GFCI receptacle properly installed.
  • In every bathroom, water-closet room, laundry room and furnace room at least one supplied ceiling or wall type electric light fixture.
  • Every kitchen shall have one convenient receptacle located along a countertop or table and if within 24" of water source it must be GFCI protected.
  • Every public hallway or stairway in multiple dwelling must be lighted at all times.
  • One approved and listed smoke detector is required (120 V AC operated smoke detector is highly recommended):
    1. On each floor and habitable basements. Must be installed in accordance with manufacturers recommendations and listing and maintained in good working condition.
    2. In the hallway adjacent to sleeping quarters (If this is a split bedroom design one goes outside of each bedroom, if common hallway only one in the hallway will suffice.)
    3. Inside of each bedroom (may be battery operated but AC operated is highly recommended to increase effectiveness of system);
    4. On each habitable floor;
    5. If new circuit is required by the code enforcement official each detector must be hardwired with battery back up and on a looped circuit;
    6. If no new circuit required a minimum of battery powered detector to be placed in each area required above (hardwired detectors are strongly recommended).
  • All fixtures, equipment, receptacles and wiring shall be maintained in a state of good repair, safe and capable of being used and installed properly.
  • The minimum capacity of any service supply and the main disconnect switch shall be capable of supporting the load and in no case shall the service be less than 100 AMPS per dwelling unit.

Safe and Sanitary Maintenance

  • Exterior surfaces resistant to deterioration and shall be treated with a protective coating or covering and maintained in good repair to prevent deterioration.
  • Every foundation wall, exterior wall and exterior roof shall be substantially weather tight, watertight and rodent-proof; capable of affording privacy.
  • Every dwelling unit shall have a minimum of R-19 insulation in the ceiling (R-30 is strongly recommended).
  • A minimum clear opening of 14" X 24" inches of access into the attic area. If any mechanical equipment is located in attic area attic access must be 22" X 36".
  • Every interior floor, wall and ceiling shall be watertight, weather-tight and rodent-proof; shall be kept in sound condition and good repair, capable of supporting normal load.
  • Every tub or shower shall have a wall surface constructed and maintained so as to be substantially impervious to water and shall be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition.
  • All windows, exterior doors basements and hatchways must be substantially watertight, weather-tight and rodent-proof and kept in good working condition and in good repair.
  • Doors shall be provided leading to all bedrooms, toilet rooms and bathrooms and all rooms adjoining a public space.
  • All exterior doors must have an apparatus for opening and closing the door on both sides, a locking mechanism, and shall be kept in sound working condition and in good repair.
  • Bathroom floors surface, kitchen floor surface and water closet compartment floor surface shall be constructed and maintained so as to be substantially impervious to water and so as to permit such floor to be easily kept in a clean and sanitary manner.
  • Every supplied facility, piece of equipment or utility which is required must be installed and constructed that it will function safely and effectively and shall be maintained in sound working condition.
  • Every interior and exterior stairway, porch and any appurtenance must be safe to use and capable of supporting the load that normal use may cause.
  • Every yard shall be properly graded so as to obtain thorough drainage as to prevent the accumulation of stagnant water and to allow positive drainage around the foundation of the dwelling unit.
  • Every dwelling shall have acceptable means of egress.
  • Every yard and exterior property area shall be kept free of noxious weeds or plant growth. (Grass must be maintained under 12 inches)
  • All construction debris must be placed in container and removed prior to final approval of the dwelling unit.

Insects, Rodents and Infestation

  • Screens shall be installed on all windows and openable areas that which open to the outdoors, with the exception of dwellings that have an operating central air conditioning system.
  • All screens must be framed and installed properly. (Cannot be stapled or permanently affixed to the sash, exterior siding etc.)
  • Every basement or cellar window used or intended to be used for ventilation or any other opening to the basement shall be supplied with screens or other approved devices to prevent rodents from entering.
  • To prevent rodent infestation the property owner is require to exterminate prior to a new occupant occupying the home. If infestation occurs after this extermination it is the responsibility of the tenant to provide extermination.(except in cases where two or more dwelling units are attached and it remains the responsibility of the owner)
  • Every dwelling unit shall be supplied with adequate rubbish storage facilities.
  • Every dwelling unit shall have adequate garbage disposal facilities or storage containers have a capacity of not more than 30 gallons per each container.

Structural

  • Wall partitions or supporting members, sills, joist, rafters or other structural members shall not lean, list or buckle, and shall not be rotted, deteriorated or damaged and shall not have holes or cracks which might admit rodents.
  • Floors or roofs shall have adequate supporting members and strength to be reasonable safe for the purpose used.
  • Roof coverings shall be maintained in good sound condition.
  • No more than two (2) roof coverings, if more than two at current time of inspection the roof covering will not have to be removed unless it is deteriorated, then it must be stripped down to sheathing.
  • Foundations, foundation walls (load bearing or non-load bearing), piers or other foundation supports shall not be deteriorated or damaged.
  • Foundation and crawl space must be free of trash and debris.
  • The roof, flashing, exterior walls, basement walls, floors and all doors and windows exposed to the weather shall be constructed and maintained so as to be weather-tight, watertight and rodent proof.
  • There shall be no chimneys or parts thereof which are defective, deteriorated or in danger of falling, or in such condition or location as to constitute a fire hazard.
  • There shall be no use of ground for floors or wood floors on ground.
  • All fuel storage tanks if used for heating purposes must be maintained in a safe condition and shall not be rusted, deteriorated or in danger of falling over. If the tank is not used for heating purposes it must be removed from the premises.
  • Steps, stairs, landings, porches, or other parts and appurtenances shall be maintained in a condition that will not fail or collapse, or pose a danger to the occupants or the public. These appurtenances must be constructed of treated lumber with galvanized fasteners.
  • Handrails and guardrails must be installed in a secure, approved and acceptable manner. Handrails must be 30 to 34 inches high. Guardrails must be 36 inches high.
  • Interior floor, walls and ceiling must be kept in sound condition and good repair, shall be safe to support the load that is required and shall be finished with suitable material which by use of reasonable household methods promote cleanliness and sanitation and shall be maintained in such a manner to enable the occupants to maintain privacy between various spaces.

Cleanliness

  • Every owner of a multiple dwelling unit or complex shall be responsible for maintaining in a clean and sanitary condition the shared or public area of the premises.
  • Every occupant of a dwelling unit shall be responsible for cleanliness of the occupied areas and facilities in which they occupy. (includes: floors, walls, ceilings, windows, plumbing fixtures, cook stove, refrigerator, cabinets and other furnishing)
  • No occupant shall obstruct in any manner any means of egress/ingress to or from any portion of the premises.

The Gastonia Housing Authority inspector will report any suspected code violations to the appropriate Authority Having Jurisdiction, i.e., City of Gastonia Code Enforcement Division.

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