When building new construction, an addition, or renovating an existing building, it may be necessary to get a building permit. Obtaining this permit means that your project meets all the necessary requirements and codes.
Obtaining a building permit varies from state to state depending on the local laws. You can easily find out about your area’s application process on your city’s site.
Today, we’ll dig a bit deeper into the process of obtaining a building permit, including some examples of situations where one is required, and the different types of permits. We’ll also talk about the procedure for obtaining one.
If you have any other questions that we don’t cover, you can always contact Permit Masters. Read on to learn everything you need to know about building permits.
When It’s Necessary to Obtain a Building Permit
There are many situations when building permits are required. For example, you have to get one when creating an entirely new structure such as building a home. You will also need one for certain types of add-ons and renovations.
In most cases, it’s necessary to get a building permit when balconies, basketball rings, pools, spas, and in some cases, corner fences and front fences. Also, the law may require you to one when the interior of a building is changed with a major renovation.
You may also be required to obtain one if the building’s structure is going to be moved or demolished. Permits are even required for storage facilities, exterior storage tanks, signs, solar collectors, retaining walls as well as bridges.
Other types of construction may require a building permit as well. For example, you may need to obtain a permit when a basement is finished, when adding a mobile home, as well as when adding other types of pre-fabricated structures. Even the installation of some types of plumbing and HVAC systems may require a permit.
Again, it all depends on your particular state and city’s laws and codes. Therefore, you should always inquire locally to find out for your specific area.
Different Types of Building Permits
There are two types of building permits: certified and uncertified. When a certified building permit is issued, the assessments are performed by a private building surveyor. When an uncertified permit is issued, the assessments are performed by the city’s surveyor.
The Process for Obtaining a Building Permit
Obtaining a permit consists of several stages.
Create a Project Plan and Budget
First of all, a budget and project plan are necessary when starting any project. Your project plan basically outlines everything about your project, including any changes you want to make to the mechanicals, electric, and plumbing.
The plan should also include your contact information, the project’s address, a description of the planned work, the name of the general contractor, architect, and engineer. You should also include a project timeline and any drawings.
Once complete, take your project plan to the city and request a review before submitting the permit application.
Ask for a Preliminary Review
In order to save time and possibly money, considering visiting your local department before submitting your formal building permit application.
This will give them a chance to look over your project and make sure it meets their guidelines. It will also give you the chance to clarify what documents you may need to send in with your permit application.
Keep in mind that some cities also require planning approvals for certain projects. You’ll need them before you can apply for a permit.
Submitting An Application
Before obtaining and submitting your application, remember that there are separate application forms for certified and uncertified building permits. Make sure you get the correct one.
It’s worth noting that most construction permits are accepted online these days. So, if you’d like to submit an application, try taking advantage of your city’s online service first, before you head down to the office.
It’s also worth noting that in some cases, you may need to obtain a development application first. In this case, you’ll be able to submit the building permit application only if the development application has been first approved.
Once you’ve completed your application, gathered any required documents, attached your project plan, and paid the permit fees, you’re then ready to submit the application packet.
Note that approval can take up to several weeks. After your application has been submitted, an inspection may be performed. A surveyor will do all the necessary assessments. Bear in mind that you may be asked to provide additional information for your application, too. If such a need arises, you will be contacted immediately.
Get Busy Building!
If you are approved, you will be granted a building permit and then you can get started on your work.
Final Thoughts on Building Permits
Preparing for a building project can be confusing, tedious, and exciting. Before you get started on your project, find out whether or not you will need a building permit. If you do, you now know what is involved in applying for one.