Summer is a great time to complete home improvement projects. Both sellers and recent buyers may opt to make upgrades because they can add value to a home. But it’s essential that you understand which projects may require a building permit. If you don’t get the proper permits before completing the work, you could run into trouble when you’re selling. Here’s what you need to know to avoid problems down the line.
Why are permits necessary?
Although obtaining permits can be a real headache, it’s a step you cannot skip. If you fail to get the permits you need, then you may jeopardize your home sale in the future. During the home inspection and appraisal, you will need to show all the permits that you have on file. If you completed a project without a permit, the lender may not finance the loan for the buyer.
Who is responsible for getting the permit?
Even if you’ve hired contractors for the job, do not assume that they’ve secured the proper permits. While the contractor can help advise you on whether or not a permit is necessary and will often pull the permit for you, be sure you follow up so that you know your project follows the letter of the law.
What projects need a permit?
Not all home improvement projects require a permit. Each municipality creates its own building codes, so you will need to confirm with them whether or not you need a permit. If your project changes the structure of the home or if it may create hazardous conditions, then you will probably need a permit. Jobs that are most likely to require a permit include:
What projects don’t need a permit?
While may updates will require that you get a permit, there are many home improvement projects you can complete without one. These could include:
What do you do if you don’t know?
If you don’t know whether or not your project requires a permit, then you need to ask. The best place to contact is your local permitting office.
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