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Old 07-30-2007, 09:25 PM   #46
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Around here we call 'Dig Safe' whenever we are going to be doing any digging.
My advise about permits? Get one and be safe knowing it was done the right way. If you ever plan to sell your house the 'house inspectors' for the buyer or the bank may just ask to see all of the permits you got.
Also without a permit your insurance may not cover you if something happens.
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Old 08-03-2007, 02:15 PM   #47
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Browsing through the thread, there are some very good points. This may have been said already, but this is where I stand:

Permits are good for safety and proper building. But what I can't stand is what I have to pay for them. I recently had my HVAC replaced and had to downgrade because the permits (HVAC, electrical, smoke) put me over budget. And to top it off, I failed for smoke detectors. I have lived there for 2 years and didn't change a thing in regards to the detectors. I guess the person issuing the C.O. missed something.

Second, the town I live in needs to know every single detail you want to do. Do you believe you need a permit to replace more than 4 boards on a stockade fence? WTF is THAT?
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Old 08-03-2007, 03:29 PM   #48
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Does you job require a permit?


The permit is to protect you, you from yourself and any future owners. There is no question that permits provide better construction and resale in terms of solid value.

It makes sense for the person doing the building pay for the permit rather than penalizing others that are not causing the added administrative and inspection costs. - Someone has to pay, so why not the person causing the costs? or are you a charity case?

The amount and controls of when permits are required are usually locally established and administered. If they are not reasonable, the only way to do it is to complain locally (your town) to the people that set the fees and requirements. - No on else will do it for you.
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Old 08-03-2007, 03:38 PM   #49
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The point was, if there were no charge for permits, people may apply for them more often. I'm sorry but, $750 for 3 township workers to come to my house and say "OK" is a little ridiculous.
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Old 08-25-2007, 04:44 PM   #50
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What needs to be submitted with permit application?


I'm considering finishing my basement (already studded and bathroom roughed-in). Exactly what do I need to submit with my permit application? I will still need to run electrical, do some minor framing, plumbing and have someone install an HVAC system. Thanks in advance.
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Old 08-26-2007, 08:34 AM   #51
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I'm considering finishing my basement (already studded and bathroom roughed-in). Exactly what do I need to submit with my permit application? I will still need to run electrical, do some minor framing, plumbing and have someone install an HVAC system. Thanks in advance.
Ask your local Town Inspectional Office. They can tell you exactly what they require for you to submit.
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Old 09-14-2007, 11:41 AM   #52
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this is actually a pretty entertaining thread to hear about different experiences and different ppls thoughts. My thoughts will get me flamed but they are this:
permits are basically to keep stupid ppl in line. someone with half a brain can usually make the decisions outlined by a permit.
as for me, I havent checked permits to see what is or inst required, but for instance, building non-load bearing walls in my basement to finish a room..i am not going to waste my time pulling and paying for a permit. A major addition..yes , but minor stuff, i like the guys incident of putting a sheet over the window.
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Old 09-14-2007, 01:05 PM   #53
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I think one of the main reason from the point of view of the goveronment to requires owner to have permit, besides safty, is to be able to tax you more...

got a visit from the assessment office asking how large is my baseemnt and whether there is a bathroom, she said she will put that in the book... I hope I won't get a big surprise when I receive my next tax bill...
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Old 09-14-2007, 01:28 PM   #54
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With a permit also comes proof that it was done properly when you go to sell the house.

The permit also gives you a free inspector to protect you from yourself and what you think you know, but really don't know.
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Old 09-14-2007, 03:51 PM   #55
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well the inspector that surveyed the houses i bought and then when i sold my first one never asked me or the previous owners for permits for anything. however, i dont think we are exactly what you would call real strict around here.

and do you really have to tell the tax accessor anything? I figure if they are going to charge you more, dont make it easy for them.
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Old 09-15-2007, 10:42 AM   #56
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Whenever your local officials err in administering the laws, you serve them with a notice of intent to sue. Then you proceed to sue them for their negligence, willful or not. This is how we keep the inept out of our governments
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Old 09-15-2007, 11:18 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by sleepy23 View Post
well the inspector that surveyed the houses i bought and then when i sold my first one never asked me or the previous owners for permits for anything. however, i dont think we are exactly what you would call real strict around here.

and do you really have to tell the tax accessor anything? I figure if they are going to charge you more, dont make it easy for them.
If by "Inspector", you are refering to the local building inspector; They generally won't check with the Home Owner or propert owner regarding whether a permit was pulled. All they have to do is check their own department records, and that tells them all they need to know....
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Old 09-29-2007, 05:16 PM   #58
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Hi. Newbee here.
I've been working in an outbuilding doing walls and such. As long as it is still considered an outbuilding there is quite a bit more you can do without a permit. I checked the laws and codes for my state and am following them as much as I can ... After I do the inside wall and floor coverings and possibly add a ceiling to the rafters plus regrade the dirt around the building and repair and paint the siding and everything inside and out I'm going to pull a permit to have electricity put in. The way I read it is that all plumbing and electric work needs a permit. Here in my State you can even repair or add to a roof as long as you don't remove the sheathing and don't go over three roof layers. I would like to be able to use this *agricultural* structure to sell 2nd hand goods out of SO when I call about the electric Permit I will ask about what I need to do for change of usage which also requires a permit. At that time the structure should look pretty clean and spiffy and it is secure but to have the inspector come out and take a look could possibly save someone's life IF he found something not quite right. Supposedly, not there yet, If something cannot be brought to code EXACTLY for whatever reason ... IF the way it was done (or could be done) will be structurally safe and sound then it will pass. But, that would be the inspector's call.... Hopefully I get a friendly, forward thinking one who wants to keep the reasoning of the codes (to be safe) and helps to overcome any restrictions there may be which prevents or makes very difficult being able to follow all codes to the letter. From my understanding, Inspectors will work with you at times even if it means varying from the strict letter of the codes. Course I don't want anyone to get hurt and I don't want to have to rip it all down either so when I have my agricultural coded structure ready for Prime Time I will call for an inspection and permit for change of usage and take it from there with my fingers crossed. We'll see.
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Old 10-01-2007, 09:46 PM   #59
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Hello all,

First post because I both love and hate this discussion. What to do? I did a basement finish on my first home a few years ago and being my first significant project I bought all the permits, had all the inspections, and lived comfortably in my new space, but upon completion, I was feeling confused about the permit and inspection process. I thought, "this will keep me safe if I do something wrong". They'll point out bad things, suggest new ideas or even compliment the work. I was even nervous before each inspection, thinking I was going to fail something. But each inspector after the other came into the newly built space, looked around for a minute or two, put an approved sticker on the wall with their signature on it and left. They didn't check jack****. I say to them, "so that's it", and they say "looks good". Uhhhh, I was pissed and relieved I guess. I must have done something good, I thought, but they didn't even look at anything up close. How could they tell? So in the end, I payed close to $500 in permits for what. So the city knows I added more taxable value to my home....uhh, yeah, that's it. It left a bad taste in my mouth about the process. If I have an opportunity to build another basement, which I might, I don't know if I would pull permits this time. Maybe some of you will talk me into it. Make me believe it is worth my time and extra money. Perhaps some of you will help me decide to go on without the permits. I am interested to hear the debate continue at any rate because it is so divided. Thx all.
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Old 10-02-2007, 12:07 AM   #60
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In lovely San Francisco you cannot even change your water heater without a permit. What baffles me about the city is that they consider it a historical area so you can only change the windows on the face of the building with like windows. What the city has failed to do is define (for the permit process) what a wood window is for these areas. They want no cladding and other details. We are fighting the permit department currently because with their guidelines currently set there are no windows available that fit their description. What are apartment building owners/ and homeowners to do? Sadley until the system is fixed alot of them are doing the jobs without permits at a large cost to the city for revenue they could be producing from the permits.
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