Code 211 of NFPA (Nation Fire Protection Association) says that a chimney inspection and fireplace inspection of all chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be done annually.
Chimney inspections and fireplace inspections are required upon the sale or transfer of a property, per NFPA 211 (Nation Fire Protection Association).
Each year unsafe fireplaces & chimneys cause significant numbers of injuries and deaths, and account for more than $200 million in property losses.  Your fireplace & chimney system are an important part of your home heating system.  Make chimney inspections & fireplace inspections a regular part of your home maintenance schedule.
For safe and efficient operation, your fireplace & chimneys need annual service, including chimney inspections or fireplace inspections, by one of our CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps.  Our technicians will verify that your fireplace & chimneys are free of obstruction and combustible deposits.*Here at Guardian Chimney Solutions we offer three levels of chimney and fireplace inspections; Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3.
Level I Inspection (Chimney Inspections & Fireplace Inspections) - This inspection is recommended when your fireplace, chimney, and venting system are easily accessible and when you are planning to maintain its current use. In general, this level of chimney inspections or fireplace inspections are performed in most homes. In a Level I inspection our CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps will verify that your fireplace & chimney structures are sound, free of obstructions, and combustible deposits, such as creosote.
Level II Inspection (Chimney Inspections & Fireplace Inspections) - The addition of a new home heating appliance or a change in the type of fuel you are burning requires a Level II inspection. This inspection level is also required upon the sale or transfer of a property or after an operating malfunction or external event that is likely to have caused damage to your fireplace & chimney. The scope of Level II chimney inspections and fireplace inspections include that of the Level I inspection plus the inspection of accessible portions of your attics, crawl spaces and basements. It may also include a performance test such as a smoke test or a pressure test and possibly an interior fireplace & chimney video inspection, if recommended by our CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps.
Level III Inspection (Chimney Inspections & Fireplace Inspections) - When a Level I or Level II inspection suggests a hidden hazard and the evaluation cannot be performed without access to concealed areas, a Level III inspection is recommended. This type of inspection confirms the proper construction and condition of concealed portions of your fireplace & chimney structure as well as its flue.  Level III chimney inspections and fireplace inspections are generally necessary when investigating an incident that has caused damage to the fireplace, chimney, building, or where a hazard is detected and suspected.
* Guardian Chimney Solutions LLC. holds the prestigious certifications given by  CSIA. Certified Chimney Sweeps, as well as The CCP. Certified Chimney Processionals .We are trained and righteously on the lookout for unsafe conditions that can cause chimney/home fires as well as uncovering and chances of dangerous or unhealthy air quality derived from a poorly maintained systems.

*When is a good time to get your chimney / fireplace inspected
This a tougher question than it sounds. The simple answer is: The National Fire Protection Association Standard 211 says, "Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary." This is the national safety standard and is the correct way to approach the problem. It takes into account the fact that even if you don't use your chimney much, animals may build nests in the flue or there may be other types of deterioration that could make the chimney unsafe to use.

The Chimney Safety Institute of America recommends that open masonry fireplaces should be swept at 1/8" of sooty buildup, and sooner if there is any glaze present in the system.  This is considered to be enough fuel buildup to cause a chimney fire capable of damaging the chimney or spreading to the home. Factory-built fireplaces should be swept when any appreciable buildup occurs. The logic is that the deposit is quite acidic and can shorten the life of the fireplace.