ISO works with municipal building-code authorities to assess and enforce building codes through its Building Code Effectiveness Grading Schedule (BCEGS) program. The BCEGS program assesses the building codes in effect in a community and how that community enforces them, with special emphasis on mitigating losses from natural hazards.
ISO has been conducting BCEGS surveys across the country since 1995. ISO has a database of information on more than 15,000 building-code enforcement departments serving more than 20,000 communities nationwide. ISO estimates that approximately 87% of the country's population lives in jurisdictions classified in the BCEGS program. ISO’s extensive analysis of building-code adoption and enforcement, coupled with feedback received from building officials throughout the country, has prompted ISO to embark on a project to review, revise, and update the criteria in BCEGS.
While current, non-amended codes are very important to a community’s resiliency, ISO's claims analysis shows that code enforcement efforts are even more critical. MTAS anticipates that future versions of the BCEGS will place more emphasis on code enforcement. In addition, an ISO study comparing fire frequency to points earned in the BCEGS program showed that strong code enforcement reduces the frequency of fires. There is real value for a community to participate in the BCEGS program.Having and enforcing current, non-amended codes results in reduced damage from natural hazards, fire, and other perils, ultimately reducing insurance costs. Property owners may benefit from insurance premium discounts or decreased deductibles.