Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > DIY Repair > General DIY Discussions

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 02-15-2010, 02:14 PM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 45
Share |
Default

Permits


I understand the need for permits. Permits make sure the job is done right and to code for safety purposes.
I plan on doing a job in my house that does not require any structural work or plumbing at all. I know pretty much all the major codes and know how to do the work. I will sub out the electrical to a licensed professional. Does anyone know any consequences that could occur from not getting a permit? Possible concerns if you were to sell the house, insurance, ect...

Red Truck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2010, 02:31 PM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Posts: 886
Default

Permits


Does your job require a permit?

11 plus pages very good info and discussion on this topic

Big Bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2010, 03:39 PM   #3
Civil Engineer
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Boston
Posts: 4,147
Default

Permits


The reason for permits is more complex than just safety and "making sure the job is done right". Pulling a permit does not guarantee that a job is done right, since it is not the responsibility of the code enforcement officer to determine if the job is done right, merely that the installation meets code so far as they can tell.

The origin of building codes goes back to Hammarabi, whose building code prescribed an eye for an eye approach, i.e. if a builder built a house, and that house fell down and killed the son of the owner, the builders son would be killed. Pretty aggressive.

Modern codes began some time around the turn of the century, I believe as a reaction to several horrific fires that needlessly killed workers (read Triangle Building in New York) and ordinary citizens. The belief was that creation of building codes would improve safety of construction, and that remains the fundamental justification for building codes to this day.

However, building codes have morphed into a means of controlling construction practices. For example, if PEX tubing is not permitted under your building code, you cannot use it. Similarly, if a licensed electrician is required to install wiring in your jurisdiction, you cannot do your own work unless you happen to be licensed. So the original purpose of promoting safety has changed to promote safety and protect trades people against low cost competition by (presumably) incompetent workers, and to protect specific types of products (read copper pipe) against less costly and (presumably) unproven materials like PEX.

So back to your question. If you perform work without a permit, the following bad things could potentially happen:

1. If the building inspector finds out (read nosy neighbor), you could be required to rip out the installation, or redo the installation, or hire a professional to fix the installation. And possibly receive a fine.

2. Several people on tis forum have noted that unapproved work can become a problem when you sell your house, especially if an inspection reveals that it does not meet code. Personally I believe you are most likely to have an issue if you perform obvious expansion or structural work such as building an addition, or raising a roof. Relatively minor activities like replacing an outlet, painting a wall, or retiling a bathroom probably do not need a permit. More extensive modifications, such as removing a wall, probably do need a permit, but might not be noticed by an inspector when you sell your house.

3. Some people on this forum have claimed that unpermitted work can trigger a rejection of an insurance claim, especially if the insurer determines that the unpermitted work was the cause of the problem, i.e faulty wiring by the homeowner done without a permit could trigger a rejection of a fire claim. I am not certain this reasoning is correct, as my understanding of insurance regulations suggests that insurance covers perils such as fires regardless of cause, with the exception of arson. However, you would need to read your policy, and even then my experience is that hardly anyone actually understands their policy, so it is possible that there are policies out there that would cause a rejection of a claim based on faulty, unpermitted work.

4. Several people on this forum have argued that unpermitted work reduces the value of your house, on the theory that an inspector may note the unpermitted work, and you as owner will not receive as much value for the work as you would have if it had been permitted.
Daniel Holzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2010, 09:51 PM   #4
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Mesilla, NM
Posts: 61
Default

Permits


Here is my theory, do the right thing and you cant go wrong. If you have to ask yourself you probably need one. If you think you need one and you don't get one than be prepared to accept the consequences.
william duffer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2010, 10:06 PM   #5
Registered User
 
Termite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 6,520
Default

Permits


Quote:
Originally Posted by william duffer View Post
Here is my theory, do the right thing and you cant go wrong. If you have to ask yourself you probably need one. If you think you need one and you don't get one than be prepared to accept the consequences.
Well said.

The vast majority of professional builders don't know the code well enough to pass every inspection. I inspect professionals' work for a living. The odds of a DIYer knowing them as thoroughly as they need to to pass off the inspection process as unnecessary are very, very low in my experience.

If you need another reason, nosey neighbors are everywhere. Numerous times in my career I have had phonecalls from neighbors turning in their neighbors for unpermitted work of all kinds. I recently got a call from a guy letting me know his neighbor had gutted his kitchen. He asked that I not disclose who tipped me off because he and the neighbor drink wine together every weekend at each others homes. It happens. Where I work it costs a lot of money to get caught without a permit...A lot more than a permit would've cost.

Advocate for yourself as a DIYer, homeowner and as someone who probably strives to do the job right. Get your work inspected so there's not a doubt in your mind.
Termite is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2010, 02:23 PM   #6
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Canada (s/w ON.)
Posts: 2,294
Default

Permits


Over and above the preceding posts, tax assessment is based on the value of a property and presumably a renovation project will add value!
The municipal assessment office needs to be informed, so that the property assessment can be properly adjusted!
Wildie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2010, 02:33 PM   #7
Member
 
concretemasonry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota - Latitude 45.057 Longitude -93.074
Posts: 3,707
Default

Permits


The permit will also allow an addition to be included in the living area for property evaluation for future buyers and a low valuation will limit the purchasers.

Dick
concretemasonry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2010, 10:40 PM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 204
Default

Permits


This question is asked a million times. You take a gamble not pulling permits. If you're going to do it right, might as well spend $100 and save yourself the stress.

But of course everyone has there own circumstance and you sure as heck wouldn't be the first guy to skip the permits. All depends on where you live I guess, and if you trust your neighbors.
johnnyboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2010, 07:43 PM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 128
Default

Permits


If you think you might need a permit, you're probably right. Call your local inspection office and follow their directions to the letter.
brandonmcginnis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2010, 07:50 PM   #10
Why not
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Houston, Tx
Posts: 49
Default

Permits


How big is the work. Your biggest concern is .... what are the chances an inspector will drive by, see work being done in his area, and know that no permit has been pulled. And if that happens, he shuts you down, and the results could be expensive (a lot more expensive than a permit and the hassle of an inspection or two)
noahweb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2010, 09:16 PM   #11
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Permits


Quote:
Originally Posted by noahweb View Post
How big is the work. Your biggest concern is .... what are the chances an inspector will drive by, see work being done in his area, and know that no permit has been pulled.
NO NO NO. Your biggest concern is that you have some disaster at your home - say a fire. Your insurance company does an inspection before writing you a check and discovers your un-permitted work (and BELIEVE YOU ME - I've been present for these inspections - and they look for it!) and DENIES YOU COVERAGE.

Seriously, as an attorney I have witnessed insurance companies denying these claims. Not because the un-permitted work caused the problem [and this is the important part] because you most likely VIOLATE your insurance policy by doing un-permitted work.

The worst case scenario of no permits is LOSING your house. It's the biggest investment in your life. What kind of person gambles on this?
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2010, 09:11 AM   #12
Jack of all - master none
 
hyunelan2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: SW Suburbs of Chicago
Posts: 1,196
Default

Permits


Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Truck View Post
I will sub out the electrical to a licensed professional.
In the city I work for, if a company/professional was doing the work - they won't do the work without a permit.

Here, if they did work without a permit and got caught, they risk not only fines, but losing their city contractor's registration permit, meaning they can't work anywhere in our city.
hyunelan2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2010, 09:55 AM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: South of Boston, MA
Posts: 17,248
Default

Permits


I wanted to build a small greenhouse off the back of my house
7x10 so less then 70 sq ft so maybe a permit not needed
But its attached to the house - no entrance from the house
And it was less then the 15' required from the property line
So by getting a permit & having them check the location & approve it I am safe from ever having someone tell me I need to tear it down

My "out" for the property line issue was a pre-existing "foundation"
Since I still have over 12' from the property line & the neighbors house is not nearby they allowed it
Scuba_Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2010, 10:19 AM   #14
Member
 
concretemasonry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota - Latitude 45.057 Longitude -93.074
Posts: 3,707
Default

Permits


Dave -

Make sure you save that permit or a copy. It will be worth a lot when you go sell and the buyer brings up "what ifs", since he will lose a bargaining chip because of it. -You are now officially "grandfathered".

Dick
concretemasonry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2010, 10:33 AM   #15
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: South of Boston, MA
Posts: 17,248
Default

Permits


We are hoping to never move & never sell
But yes I save all my paperwork & permits/approvals
We are on a 1st name basis with the building Dept

Scuba_Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Do I really need permits? mirzai_m Building & Construction 20 01-09-2014 01:21 PM
Permits on partially completed addition just Building & Construction 4 04-19-2012 11:27 PM
permits / inspections evill Building & Construction 18 11-29-2009 08:27 PM
Permits in maryland Frank1959 Building & Construction 9 09-30-2008 02:27 PM
International building code and permits rforsha Building & Construction 4 08-28-2006 06:35 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.