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Do I need a permit in New york to add basement stairs to the front and back, if I have a basement already? I live in a brownstone
 

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A permit is a local requirement, so visit or call to find out if one is required where you are. There may also be specific requirements depending on the location and type of building and improvements.

You did not say, but if it on the exterior, that complicates things since the neighbors may be allowed a say.

Dick
 

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And find out if you are going to need an inspection to go with the permit. See if the inspector will approve your forming etc. so you don't pour the stairs only to have them rejected with threat of having to remove them.
 
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