The city of Easton requires a certificate of occupancy or a "code" inspection. This inspection is done by the city. They send an inspector to the property who looks for safety issues or violations that need to be fixed. Any violations noted must be corrected by the seller before the home is sold or done by the buyer after the sale. Either way, someone needs to fix the problems.
The violations can include things such as GFI outlets needed near water sources, windows that don't stay open must be fixed, stairways must have handrails...etc.
Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton and College Hill require these inspections. Many of the municipalities in the Lehigh Valley don't require the inspection. Hellertown requires a curb and sidewalk inspection but they don't look inside the home. Each municipality is different.
When they say "code free" this usually indicates the code inspection was already done and everything is okay.
A few years ago, when it was a sellers market, the sellers were making the buyers take on the responsibility of getting the code violations corrected. These days the sellers are getting forced to correct the violations and many agreement of sales include a line stating that the seller will be responsible for getting the certificate of occupancy and fixing any noted violations.
Hope this helps.
Happy New Year!
Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc
Bethlehem, PA 18020