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Old 03-27-2008, 09:11 AM   #16
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Permits


Hi Sftail2,

The way I justified getting a permit for my basement reno was to look at all the cost of time, labour, and money that goes into the thing. What %age of cost is added by the permitting process.... some, but not much.

The savings of a few hundred bucks a year extra on my property tax bill isn't enough of a "reward" to make the risk of not getting a permit worthwhile.

Good luck with your reno.
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Old 03-27-2008, 12:15 PM   #17
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The job is being done correct and can't see why pay for a permit (and have to deal with a building inspector which I have heard they are the worst in this area) and then they can raise my property tax and I pay for it every year there after!
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Old 03-27-2008, 03:21 PM   #18
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OMG, you people don't live in my area.

I paid over $200 for my permit to finish the basement and when the building inspector came out for the rough in inspection he glanced around and told me it looked good. He was there five minutes and barely looked at anything.

Now, if he does that with me, someone he doesn't know, just think how his inspections go with all his buddies that he does daily inspection for. It probably goes something like this, "This is the same style of house you built last week right Bob? and your'e sure everything was done the same way? Ok, here's your permit. Say high to Martha for me!"

One big thing I learned during this project is there were a lot of things not done to code when the house was built in the first place and it wasn't inspected by the same guy.

The only thing the building inspector is good for in my town is letting the appraiser know they need to come by.

If it's me and I'm concerned about the installation, I'm calling a private inspector or an engineer.
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Old 03-27-2008, 03:25 PM   #19
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So are you complaining that it was easy for you to get a permit?
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If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
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Old 03-27-2008, 04:14 PM   #20
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Here in NJ we are very lucky; We get SCREWED 3 times.
Permits are now 10% of total job price;
Then you get taxed up ur butt
Third: You cannot sell your house until it is inspected by the town to make sure nothing was done without a permit and their FRAKIN RIPOFF FEES
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Old 03-27-2008, 07:08 PM   #21
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I know I am going to stir the pot with this post but I will let it fly anyway.
As far as permits are concerned the Government can shove them up their ***. Its just another way of them to grab money from you, nothing more. They get you for up to 10% of the price of the job to get the permit and then re-assess your property so you have to pay more taxes when your finished. Its my house and property, dammit. What right does the government have to tell me how, when, where and what I can do with my property.

If you for example build a deck on your house. Go to the office and have your plans approved, pay your permit fee, build it to the drawing specs, and have it inspected at the end and for some unforseen reason it fails or falls down, is the government going to help you pay for the rebuild????? If someone was hurt is the government going to help pay the claim against you???? We all know the answer to those questions.....Hell No!!!!!!

If the government would provide these services free of charge, with the tax money that is already being collected, I would have no problem with that. Having them provide a service to their residents to guard against shoddy work and dead beat contractors I feel would be a good service for them to provide.

Its just another tax masquerading as a service. Just think of all the little fees(read taxes) that we pay without thinking twice about. It all adds up.

Ok, Rant over

Chuck
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Old 03-27-2008, 10:36 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chazbe View Post
I know I am going to stir the pot with this post but I will let it fly anyway.
As far as permits are concerned the Government can shove them up their ***. Its just another way of them to grab money from you, nothing more. They get you for up to 10% of the price of the job to get the permit and then re-assess your property so you have to pay more taxes when your finished. Its my house and property, dammit. What right does the government have to tell me how, when, where and what I can do with my property.
I'm all for personal freedom, but you do not live in a vacuum, you coexist with the rest of society. If you've built a firetrap, or improperly plumbed a gas appliance, then it's no longer just all about you, is it?

Quote:
If you for example build a deck on your house. Go to the office and have your plans approved, pay your permit fee, build it to the drawing specs, and have it inspected at the end and for some unforseen reason it fails or falls down, is the government going to help you pay for the rebuild???
No. If it failed, it failed for a good reason. You built it, you fix it if it's deficient. Do you know how many people buy a house, "fix it up" and then resell it?

Quote:
If someone was hurt is the government going to help pay the claim against you???? We all know the answer to those questions.....Hell No!!!!!!

If the government would provide these services free of charge, with the tax money that is already being collected, I would have no problem with that. Having them provide a service to their residents to guard against shoddy work and dead beat contractors I feel would be a good service for them to provide.
Well the process doesn't and cannot work that way. If you know what you're doing, you'll build it right and have no issues. If you don't, it's not up to the government to correct your work or instruct you on how to become a properly informed builder.

Quote:
Its just another tax masquerading as a service. Just think of all the little fees(read taxes) that we pay without thinking twice about. It all adds up.

Ok, Rant over

Chuck
I appreciate the rant. Much of it is based on your incorrect assumption that after the inspection your taxes are increased and the whole purpose is to squeeze a little more money out of John Q Public. It isn't.

Your improvement may increase your assessment, but when everyone's assessment is correct, everyone is paying their fair share of their property wealth. The government is not making more money because your taxes increased. Your property assessment plus everyone elses equals the total property wealth, and that allows everyone to proportionally pay each budget under the assessments.
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Old 03-28-2008, 10:28 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sftail2 View Post
The job is being done correct and can't see why pay for a permit (and have to deal with a building inspector which I have heard they are the worst in this area) and then they can raise my property tax and I pay for it every year there after!
Who says the job is being done correctly? How do they know? If your building inspectors are the 'worst in this area', what does that mean? They are the worst at doing their jobs? Their interpersonal skills are lacking? They have bad breath?

What is so wrong with paying your fair share of property taxes and not a dime more?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chazbe View Post
I know I am going to stir the pot with this post but I will let it fly anyway.
As far as permits are concerned the Government can shove them up their ***. Its just another way of them to grab money from you, nothing more. They get you for up to 10% of the price of the job to get the permit and then re-assess your property so you have to pay more taxes when your finished. Its my house and property, dammit. What right does the government have to tell me how, when, where and what I can do with my property.

If you for example build a deck on your house. Go to the office and have your plans approved, pay your permit fee, build it to the drawing specs, and have it inspected at the end and for some unforseen reason it fails or falls down, is the government going to help you pay for the rebuild????? If someone was hurt is the government going to help pay the claim against you???? We all know the answer to those questions.....Hell No!!!!!!

If the government would provide these services free of charge, with the tax money that is already being collected, I would have no problem with that. Having them provide a service to their residents to guard against shoddy work and dead beat contractors I feel would be a good service for them to provide.

Its just another tax masquerading as a service. Just think of all the little fees(read taxes) that we pay without thinking twice about. It all adds up.

Ok, Rant over

Chuck
Do you feel the same attitude and selfish justifications should apply to the people that build and inspect bridges?

I think the folks that lost loved ones in the I-35W Mississippi River bridge collapse wouldn't necessarily share those feelings.

How about the fire extinguishers at your local daycare? Or the daycare building itself?

Individual rights end where the safety and welfare of others begins. Does this mean that you or someone else has the right to endanger some future home owner and their family because of your selfish and shortsighted misconceptions of what building codes and required permits really do?

I don't think so. Why would you think so?
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Old 04-13-2008, 01:27 AM   #24
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I'm a building inspector, so I'll weigh in.

First of all, there are inspectors out there that don't do their job. They just show up and approve everything. Then there's the guys that have the "ten pound badge" and make the builder or homeowner do things that they can't substantiate with code...These guys tend to say "because that's the way I like it" a lot. Both of those guys make us look bad.

The challenge of being an inspector is walking the fine line between getting along with everyone and getting code-compliant work. Not always possible. I've learned that I can't be on everyone's Christmas card list. When I write an item on an inspection, whether it is one item or forty items, I make sure that the owner/builder/subcontractor understands why it is being written, and the reasoning behind the code. I don't want people fixing things to make me happy or to pass, I want them to fix things because they now understand the error that has been made and why it is a hazard if not repaired. I manage to maintain a friendly relationship with the majority of them, and we can talk fishing at the same time I'm looking everything over.

The vast majority of inspectors really care about the end user of the house or commercial building we're inspecting. The way I see it, the homeowner or future buyer is my customer...The builder is someone I have a professional relationship with, but they're not my customer. While I'm sympathetic of the money the owner or contractor may have to spend to get their work up to the minimum standard of the code, I don't lose sleep over it. What I lose sleep over is someday missing something that causes someone to get shocked or burned up in a fire. That's why I take my time and am thorough.

I get permits on all the work I do on my house. My code knowledge is considerably better than the local inspector, and my work is 100% compliant every time, but that isn't the point. It is the law, and it covers my back side as a property owner.

No offense to the builders and remodelers, but I have been inspecting for a number of years, and I can only think of one builder that never does something wrong. Even the best builders violate the codes, and the majority of them don't even know they're doing it. Homeowners should hire the best builder or remodeler they can, and should put their trust in that person. However, they should always insist that the contractor gets a building permit so there's oversight of the work they're paying for. If the builder doesn't want a permit, there is a reason...Send them down the road.

As for the "tax man" opinions...
I've never heard of a city municipality that actually makes money on building inspections/plan review/codes. At best, it is a break-even venture. In most cities, permit fees and inspection costs are supplemented with city funds (property taxes) to keep the department staffed and running. If you don't like that idea, drive around a city that hasn't had codes enforecement in years and see about moving there. You can probably get a heck of a deal on a fix-er-up'r house.
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