The Rental Housing Inspection program is intended to "ensure public health, safety and welfare insofar as they are affected by the continued occupancy and maintenance of structures and premises". This is accomplished through a process of registration of all rental dwellings and regular periodic inspections to assure that "existing structures and premises that do not comply with these provisions shall be altered or repaired to provide a minimum level of health and safety as required" in Chapter 13 of the Ames Municipal Code.
Ames Municipal Code Chapter 13, Rental Housing Code, was locally written and enacted in 1977, and completely rewritten in 2009. This Code requires that every rental dwelling in Ames be registered with the Inspection Division and regularly inspected to assure compliance with the minimum maintenance standards of Chapter 13. The Inspection Division receives rental registration applications, makes required inspections, and approves rentals for occupancy by issuing Letters of Compliance (LOC).