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Permit scam/conspiracy

1787 Views 9 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  baleworker
Hello Everyone!

I recently applied for a building permit to make a second story addition to my house. Before applying, I spoke to the city and asked what I need. Upon their recommendations, all the structural modifications to the roof trusses were designed and stamped by an engineer.

Engineer told me that city engineer is a former employee of their firm and I will get permit no problems.

I applied for permit, they said everything looks good but in the last moment they called me and said that my foundation might be weak and requested for extra engineering.

My contract with an engineer clearly stated that foundation certification was not included. Why would he put it in unless he expected this form the city and kept silent?

Plus city engineer told me that he wants inspections to be done by the same engineering firm and wants me to pay for it!

This is a total nonsence, I can understand a foundation part but do they even have a right to ask me to hire a third party inspector? and especially the same firm?

I think in this economy engineer doesnt have many clients and uses his friends in the city hall to bring in more business. He gave me a teaser rates in the beginning and now wants even more than original fee.

I dont know if they gonna stop, they can start asking for soil testing, excavations etc etc.

What can I do at this point? My project is already over the budjet and if I am building an addition, it doesnt mean I have tons of money. In facts, we are doing the work ourselves to save on labor. We can not afford to feed the engineer on every stage of the project, especially unnecessary.

Anyone had similar situations? Please advice!!! We are really lost!
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I live in Kentucky and this is my first experience with a permit process.

However engineer should have told me that foundation can be an issue since he is an experienced guy and knows what they need for a permit. And he promised me it will go thru without any issues.

I asked him to do a truss system only since that was what city asked for. Since truss was an originally engineered component being modified. Engineer verbally confirmed that the rest of the structure doesn’t have to be engineered and my plans are sufficient.

Existing foundation was built to the code minimums for a single story building and does not meet requirements for having a converted attic since it now needs to have a 2 story minimum thickness. That’s why city asked me to have a certification issued by an engineer, to make sure that footers under two outside walls will be able to take the load.

I always thought city is supposed to inspect the work and there is no fee for it unless reinspection is needed. Why city inspector cant compare the actual structure to the engineered plans? Is not what his job is? How many inspections can they request?

Also can they start asking for a soil testing etc? Engineer told me that current foundation is sufficient for the new load even if he takes a lowest value of 1500psf for the soil and promised to issue a written certification within a few days but for a fee which equals 50% of his original fee for the whole truss system design! How come a 1 line calculation, can cost half of the truss system? I can clearly see bad original intentions here.

But what can I do at this point? Cancel the project? Walk away to another engineering firm? I don’t have that much money to give away for nothing and not even dare to imagine what they gonna charge me for the inspections.

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Yeah, foundation concerns sound to be valid to me. Looks like engineer was not 100% honest with us, but as far as paperwork goes he is clean and there is nothing we can do about it.

City usually does inspections and there is no fee unless they need to reinspect. Why would they ask me to hire a third party inspector? This is ridiculous, city inspector should be able to certify if the structures were built up to the specs or not! Over wise she is completely useless and should be digging tranches instead of doing inspections!

I just cant believe that inspector cant look at the plans and certify that all the work was performed according to them! This is a part of a building permit and that’s what I was told initially by city official. Why would they change their mind suddenly? Obviously after talking to my engineer and figuring out a way for him to make more money out of thin air!
You have already been told the answer to this
The city will not certify a structure to hold the adidtional weight
It's not part of a building permit, it's part of the design plans
I guess I was not very clear and you guys misunderstood me. Inspections they are asking for, have nothing to do with foundation.

I am not expecting the city to certify a foundation, what I expect them is to certify that the new structure is built according to engineering drawings.

And they want me to hire an engineer for that! They want a rough in inspection to be done by an engineer! This is a city inspector's job!
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