The Building Code Effectiveness Grading Schedule (BCEGS®) assesses the building codes in effect in a particular community and how the community enforces its building codes, with special emphasis on mitigation of losses from natural hazards.
Dale Thomure, CBO, CFM
Manager, Community Hazard Mitigation (BCEGS)
The concept is simple: municipalities with well-enforced, up-to-date codes should demonstrate better loss experience, and insurance rates can reflect that. The prospect of lessening catastrophe-related damage and ultimately lowering insurance costs provides an incentive for communities to enforce their building codes rigorously — especially as they relate to windstorm and earthquake damage.
The anticipated upshot: safer buildings, less damage, and lower insured losses from catastrophes.
The BCEGS program assigns each municipality a BCEGS grade of 1 (exemplary commitment to building code enforcement) to 10. ISO develops advisory rating credits that apply to ranges of BCEGS classifications (1-3, 4-7, 8-9, 10). ISO gives insurers BCEGS classifications, BCEGS advisory credits, and related underwriting information.
ISO began implementing the program in states with high exposure to wind (hurricane) hazards, then moved to states with high seismic exposure, and then continued through the rest of the country.
This website contains a wealth of information about the BCEGS program in general. The website can also lead you to specific information about your community's BCEGS grading and what you can do to get a better grading.
Follow the links for frequently asked questions about BCEGS:
If your community has not yet received a BCEGS grading — or if you've recently made improvements in your building code enforcement services — you may be eligible for a BCEGS survey. During that survey, an ISO field representative will use the BCEGS Questionnaire to assist in the evaluation of your community's resources for code enforcement. ISO will use the information for the purpose of establishing your community's BCEGS grading.
If you'd like ISO to consider your city, town, or jurisdiction for a BCEGS survey, send your request to your ISO National Processing Center.
If ISO has already scheduled your community for a survey, you can expedite the process by answering the questions in the BCEGS Questionnaire in advance of the ISO field representative's visit.
Download the BCEGS Questionnaire in Microsoft® Word format, and complete or print it with your own Word software. You can also download just the Employee Data Sheet, which you need to submit for each building code enforcement employee. Or use the online order form to request a copy of the BCEGS Questionnaire.
For more information on any topic related to the Building Code Effectiveness Grading Schedule (BCEGS®) program, Contact ISO Mitigation, or call the ISO mitigation specialists at 1-800-444-4554.
Note: Average state classifications and scores are calculated using the latest available BCEGS results from graded communities in each state. As ISO evaluates communities on a 4-to-5 year recurring cycle, data used in the averages may not be from the same period in time. Averages are not weighted, and no community data is counted more than once in the calculation of a state’s average.