Virginia Building and Residential Codes

The Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC) is a state regulation promulgated by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Codes and regulations are adopted by the Board of Housing and Community Development.  The USBC is part of the Virginia Administrative Code (VAC), published under the Virginia Code Commission.

The Virginia Building Codes are updated on a three-year cycle.   Participation in the code development process is encouraged through the cdpVA system.  The cdpVA enables people to create code change proposals, submit comments, and access information about the Virginia Code Change Process.

The 2021 editions of the International Codes published by the International Code Council are incorporated by reference into the 2021 USBC.  The USBC went into effect on January 18, 2024.

Building Code Compliance Software for Virginia

Plan Analyst code compliance software programs make it easy for building officials, architects and other designers to quickly perform commercial and residential building code plan reviews / code studies.  Plan Analyst for the 2021 IBC and Plan Analyst for the 2021 IRC simplify the plan review / code study process enabling compliance to specific code years.  This proven software allows modifications to accommodate local amendments, where applicable.  Users have the ability to add code requirements and to add to the checklist.  Changes can be made permanent by changing the data file using the setup section of Plan Analyst, or specific reports can be edited for special conditions.

Plan Analyst Calculators: Deck – Sign – Beam & Column

Plan Analyst Deck, Sign and Beam & Column Calculators are additional simple and effective design and code review software tools that will quickly become your go-to resources when working on associated tasks.

Users of Plan Analyst in Virginia have included:

City of SalemACA Architects
City of SuffolkArtlite Sign Company, Inc
Faquier CountyDevereaux & Associates
Frederick CountyLemay Erickson Architects
Gloucester CountyMMM Design Group
Nelson CountyRetnauer, Baynes Associates PC
Sussex CountyWoodword Construction

Building and residential code resources in Virginia

Energy Code Compliance Software for Virginia

Visit the U.S. Department of Energy website to see the latest on energy code adoption in Virginia, including the use of COMcheck Energy Code compliance software. COMcheck enables architects, builders, designers, and contractors to determine whether new commercial or high-rise residential buildings, additions, and alterations meet the requirements of the IECC and ASHRAE Standard 90.1.

The “Building Codes Assistance Project” also provides information on Virginia’s building energy codes.

FEMA Building Code Adoption Tracking

The FEMA Building Code Adoption Tracking program reports on the status of hazard-resistant building code adoption in each state. Virginia is in FEMA Region 3. Read the 2023 Region 3 fact sheet showing the annual metric of the percent of communities adopting hazard-resistant building codes in Virginia.


American Institute of Architects – AIA Virginia represents architects in the state.  There are over 7,000 registered and reciprocal architects in Virginia.

Virginia has several ICC Chapters in the state.

Virginia code adoption status on the ICC website