What is the ITE? Get to know the ITV of buildings

In the same way that cars have an MOT to check for faults that may affect their operation and the safety of those who drive them, buildings are subject to an ITE. The Technical Inspection of a Building is the way in which we ensure that the property is in good condition and complies with all building and safety regulations.

If you are not familiar with this term, don’t worry. In this article you will find all the details of the ITE. How often is this done? What do they check when they do it? Find out the answers to these questions below.

What does the Technical Inspection of a Building (ITE) consist of?

The Technical Building Inspection (ITE) is a detailed analysis of the structure of a building that evaluates its state of conservation, accessibility and energy efficiency. It seeks to ensure that the building is in optimum condition and meets the essential requirements for its use.

The ITE is applied to buildings with an age of more than 50 years in some autonomous communities, and after that date, every 10 years, although this may vary according to local regulations in municipalities with more than 25,000 inhabitants, according to the Royal Decree Law 8/2011 of 1 July.

What do you assess in the ITE?

At the time of the ITE, a professional, such as an architect or quantity surveyor, will come in to carry out the examination. But what will they check in our building?

  • The integrity of the structure, construction and shared facilities of the property.

  • The general state of the building, ensuring its safety and sanitary conditions.

  • Energy efficiency in line with the Energy Certification of Buildings, a key measure of their environmental impact and resource consumption.

  • The accessibility of the building, such as stairs, ramps, lifts, handrails, etc.
  • The electrical installations and the sewage system.

What happens after the ITE?

Two scenarios may arise once the inspector has passed the examination. On the one hand, that everything is correct and the result is favourable and everything is correct. Or that the examination is unfavourable and some irregularities have to be rectified.

We can find different types of deficiencies, from the mildest to those that need quick and imminent action:

  • Very serious deficiencies: Immediate action is required. They often affect the structural stability of the building and the safety of those who live in it. For example, deep cracks in support pillars.

  • Serious deficiencies: Although they do not reach the critical risk level, they still pose safety hazards. Necessary precautionary measures are taken before remedial action is considered. For example, damp or electrical problems.

  • Major deficiencies: They do not pose an immediate risk to structural stability or safety, but do impact functionality. For example, wear and tear on the façade, lack of waterproofing of the building or minor plumbing problems.

  • Minor deficiencies: These require preventive or corrective maintenance interventions to avoid worsening, such as small surface cracks or peeling paint.

What happens if the ITE is unfavourable?

As we have already seen, our building may fail the test… So what procedure should we follow?

First of all, we must apply for the building permit from the Town Hall and wait for them to give us the execution order.

Then, we will look for the professionals who will carry out the rehabilitation and we will get different quotations.

It will then be when the rehabilitation is carried out within the established timeframe that we will know the result of the ITE. Once the reforms have been carried out, we must request and present the Certificate of Suitability at the corresponding Town Hall.

Is it compulsory to pass the ITE?

Yes, it is absolutely mandatory. As mentioned above, it will be carried out when our building is 40-50 years old and every 10 years thereafter. 

If the ITE is not carried out:

  • The competent authorities can impose financial penalties of up to €9,000 on the owners por community of neighbours. 
  • They can restrict access to public services such as water or electricity. 
  • In extreme situations, especially if the building poses a security risk, the authorities may disable its use pending inspection.

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