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Old 10-01-2012, 06:50 AM   #1
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building permit questions


I can understand what needs to be done for electrical and plumbing permits, but what exactly would an inspector look for in a building permit for the below project.

Kitchen gut + remodel
-remove less than 2’ long non load bearing wall
-put down subfloor and tile
New sheetrock for walls and ceiling
-new insulation
- relocate window CL 1.5’ over
-Replace regular door with French doors to go outside.

I know there is a right way and wrong way for things like the window and door as far as structuring and whatnot, but is there anything else that I need to start researching?

Along with all the necessary electrical and plumbing upgrades…

Im like a sponge, have at it…

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Old 10-01-2012, 07:13 AM   #2
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building permit questions


We cannot speak for every inspector, of every area, town, city, region.

There are general things that an inspector looks for, and there are ALSO specific things that each inspector looks for (some are their "pet peeves" - particular points relavent to your area, or that they feel needs to be more scrutinized during inspections).

Your best bet is to contact your local inspectional office and speak with the inspector that is assigned to your are of town/city, and review your list with him or her.

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Old 10-01-2012, 07:14 AM   #3
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building permit questions


In MA your most likly going to have to have a framing and insulation permit.
Not sure if they still have them up there but you used to be able to get a renivation permit that covered minor things like this.
You would be best served to make a call to the zoning dept. or going down there for a one on one with the inspector. They like it when you show you really want to do it right and not try to slide one in on them.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:37 AM   #4
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building permit questions


The building department and inspectors, contrary to mythology, are not fire breathing dragons and only the ones with confirmed cases of rabies have ever bitten. We have all had disagreements with them and some can be "bristly" for lack of a better word. It all works out and those of us who dealt with the sames one over and over get to know them.

Stopping by your building department ahead of time is a wonderful idea. Many have printed materials and guides that can really help you out. Be sure and check on how to schedule and what to expect in terms of timely response in your area. Some municipalities, thanks to budget cuts, have inspectors spread fairly thin. Make sure you understand the work you are allowed to do yourself, that which may need drawings stamped, etc.

A blanket renovation permit may be a good idea if available as it could save you separate permit fees. Depending on where you are, you may need a demolition permit or at least some ordinance variance for parking a dumpster in the drive or out front. Make sure you do not need something for asbestos and lead. I would bite the bullet and do all the demo at once.
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Old 10-01-2012, 08:39 AM   #5
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building permit questions


yes i agree they are not something to be feared, i do plan to speak to one to see the right steps into doing this reno. the main reason being that i want my house to still be covered in case of a electrical fire, etc from the reno.

i was asking for ammo so i can ask the right questions and be a 'little" prepared to speak with one.
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Old 10-01-2012, 08:45 AM   #6
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building permit questions


langless,

check out this link, it provides a list of when a permit is required ...... of course it is best to speak with the building official for an "official" determination

http://www.mass.gov/eopss/consumer-p...elling.html#A2

Good luck!
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:17 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by langless28 View Post
yes i agree they are not something to be feared, i do plan to speak to one to see the right steps into doing this reno. the main reason being that i want my house to still be covered in case of a electrical fire, etc from the reno.

i was asking for ammo so i can ask the right questions and be a 'little" prepared to speak with one.
Well one piece of ammo that you will need anyhow is at least a basic floorplan. I use Sweet Home 3D for basics. It is free, open source and with a short learning curve. It is as accurate as the measurements you put into it. It is not for construction or finished carpentry drawings of course. There are tons of free downloadable symbols you can download if the basic ones are not enough.

Do one before and as proposed. Obviously if you already have more detailed drawings, bring those instead.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:46 AM   #8
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building permit questions


If you feel you have done things right and did good work, try to get a permit.

Since you rewired, moved a window, and improved insulation, all those were benefits to the home and future value. A realtor will tout those and they probably will be different than the rest of the structure for many years because they are not original.

Home inspectors like an easy inspection, as long as things are done properly (generally) and eliminate the troublesome nit-picking for both you and him. Explain was was done (if you have any photos of the progress, that is good). If he can do an inspector to fit his schedule (probably late morning or early afternoon) and he would be exposed to too many agruements at that time.

The benefit to you is that if you have an inspection and approval in-hand when you go to sell. When you sell in the future, you will have proof of being improved and not questioned subjected and grandfathered under the code when the work was done.

I know of people that wanted a non-required inspection and paid the minimal fee (at the time) just to get one to use as an asset. Inspectors also like easy inspections at their convenience to "pump up" the amounts that are used for ratings and reviews.

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Old 10-01-2012, 10:44 AM   #9
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building permit questions


thanks for the good responses guys!

do permits need to be obtained before work starts? I want to get a jump on ordering the dumpster and demo work. can they be obtained during work?
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:49 AM   #10
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building permit questions


In my area, gutting the kitchen will likely require you to update the electric, possibly update some plumbing if moving the sink or dishwasher. You may also need to be inspected for fireblocking, insulation, and framing of the new doors/windows.

Anyway, to pull the permit, at a minimum you will likely need some kitchen redesign plans, and a structural layout, showing headers and framing for the new doors and windows.
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:54 AM   #11
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building permit questions


When I submit my permit application as a homeowner doing my own work, I am required to submit detailed plans.

For example, when I gutted my kitchen (i.e. moved windows, eliminate door, moved HVAC ducts, etc.) I included a detail project plan along with my permit application, spelling out exactly what materials I will be using, along with proper spacing requirements.

It made inspectors' jobs lot easier and they in turn provided pointers to avoid mistakes in my designs.

You can probably rent the dumpster and start the demo process, but in my case, I decided to hold off until I got the "go ahead" approval first.

Good luck

PS. By the way, unless I am making structural changes, adding/deleting circuits, moving plumbing, I do not submit permit applications for things like replacing sheetrocks and re-tiling.
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Old 10-01-2012, 12:07 PM   #12
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building permit questions


yeah well all new electrical will be installed and in MA in my town i can do my own electrical and renos, but i CANNOT do my own plumbing so i guess i will need to spec someone out.

i have electrical, and detailed floor plans, nothing on the materials, front view of the doors etc.
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Old 10-11-2012, 09:59 AM   #13
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building permit questions


Quote:
Originally Posted by langless28 View Post
thanks for the good responses guys!

do permits need to be obtained before work starts? I want to get a jump on ordering the dumpster and demo work. can they be obtained during work?
Permits are a tricky thing.. It's all based on what city or county you live in, and how tempermental the code inspectors can be.

In my town for example, I had a fence put in.. The contractor did not pull a permit. Although work was completed, the code enforcement officer was driving by and noticed a new fence. It was red tagged and i had to get a permit for the inspector to sign off on, or i possibly had to tear out the fence.

Same thing happened with my sprinkler system that i had installed. But it was not completed and they had to pull the permit to continue work.

I agree with most comments on here.. Call your permitting office to find out what you need a permit for, and what you can start ahead of time with out a permit. And ask them about the plumbing if you are allowed to do it yourself, even though you already think you can't. there may be some sort of rule you don't know that can enable you to do your own plumbing.

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