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Wisconsin Uniform Dwelling Code

This page is intended to be a resource for contractors and home owners to help them better understand the requirements of the Wisconsin Uniform Dwelling Code.

Uniform Dwelling Code (UDC) Inspection Requirements: As of January 1, 2005, there will be enforcement of the UDC in all Wisconsin Municipalities. This involves obtaining a building permit from your municipality's inspection agency. Contact your town or village clerk to find out who your inspector is (see "UDC Inspector" links below).

Contractors: The new law requires all contractors be certified with the state. To do so you must fill out a Business Credential Application. The credential fee is $40. You may download the application here or contact us for help.

You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader for some of the following links. You can download it here.

Wisconsin Department of Commerce
Click Here
Code for Construction Standards
Click Here
Code for HVAC Standards
Click Here
Code for Plumbing Standards
Click Here
Energy Conservation
Click Here
Administration and Enforcement
Click Here

Contact the following to find out who your UDC inspector is:

Price County                              
Click Here
Taylor County
Click Here
Ashland County
Click Here
Lincoln County
Click Here
Vilas County
Click Here
Sawyer County
Click Here
Oneida County
Click Here

Frequently asked questions:

What is the purpose of the UDC?
The UDC is a uniform statewide code that sets minimum standards for new dwellings.
What buildings are covered by the UDC?
One and two family dwellings built since June 1, 1980 and their additions and 
   These include: Seasonal and recreational dwellings, condominiums, a single-family
   residence connected to a commercial occupancy, Community-based residential
   facilities, a non-residential building converted to a dwelling (such as a barn).
What structures are not covered by the UDC?
- Dwellings built before June 1, 1980.
   - Mobile (manufactured) homes which are subject to Federal standards.
   - Multi-unit (three or more) residential buildings which are regulated by State
     Commercial Building Codes.
   - Detached garages or accessory buildings.
What about homes built before June 1, 1980?
The state has no construction or heating code for those dwellings. However, the State
   plumbing and Electrical Codes and smoke detector codes do apply to all dwellings,
   regardless of age.
How is the UDC enforced?
The UDC is principally enforced by municipal or county building inspectors who must be 
   state-certified.  In lieu of local enforcement, municipalities have the option to have
   the state provide enforcement through state-certified inspection agencies for just
   new homes.  To determine whether the municipality, county or state provides UDC  
   enforcement, contact your municipality or the Division of Safety and Buildings.  Note
   the option of no UDC enforcement for municipalities of less than 2500 population no
   longer exists as of January 1, 2005.  Permit requirements for alterations and additions
   will vary by municipality.  Regardless of permit requirements, state statues require
   compliance with the UDC rules by owners and builders even if there is no enforcement.
What could happen if the code is not followed?
Failure to comply with the code could cause the following:
   - Endangering the health and safety of self, family or guests.
   - Levying of fines and/or refusal to grant occupancy permit by local building inspection
   - Civil action by owners against builders.
   - Difficulty in selling the home.
   - Civil action by future owners.
   - Difficulty in obtaining mortgage loans or property insurance.
   - Loss of building and community values.
What if I am not able to exactly follow the Code?
If it would be difficult to comply with a particular code provision because of special site
   or design considerations, then you may submit a petition for variance with the required 
   fees to the State. Your variance must show an equivalence to the code provision by
   different means.


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