(Closed) What happens if you don’t get permits?

posted 6 years ago in Home
Post # 3
46416 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

A colleague of mine at work and her husband built a  huge new deck without a permit. The neighbours complained and they had to take it down! What a waste of money.

Your house insurance also may not be valid if you have any kind of claim and there was no valid permit.

Your local municipal government can tell you if you even need a permit, depending on the extent of the renovations.
Get the permit if it’s required- it’s well worth the money.

Post # 4
14495 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

The fines would cost you so much more than the 1k, more like 10 fold.  You would be better off just sucking it up and getting them and doing the project right rather than paying way more in the long run.  I know people who have made that mistake and some on smaller projects than a basement and it ended up costing them 10s of thousands of dollars.

Post # 5
2790 posts
Sugar bee

@StormyRose:  You could have a hard time selling your home because the home inspector that checks those things will then make you pay to have someone else come out and make sure it’s up to code. It also depends on where you live though. I know in smaller areas near where I live next to no one gets a permit to do work on their home and when they sell nearly no one asks.

I guess it also depends on what your having done. If your doing some insulation on an 8×8 room I probably wouldn’t waste my money but electrical is something I would NOT skimp on.

Post # 6
3776 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2004

Doing it without permits is a really, really bad idea.  If you have a fire or tornado or whatever, the insurance company can refuse to pay your policy.  You might have to completely redo it, with permits in order to sell, and they will fine you so hard you won’t know what hit you.  Get the permits.

Post # 8
753 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Thanks for asking this question. I’ve been wondering about this myself.

Post # 9
5762 posts
Bee Keeper

There are things you really NEED to get permits for, and for others you really don’t. I used to be convinced it was the town’s way of making a little extra money. 😛

All you need to do is to call your town’s construction code official (anonymously) and ask them some questions. If you’re making structural changes and running plumbing and wiring, those should be done by licensed contractors. The electrical is especially important, especially if you have an electrical fire in your house, and its found to be directly related to the poor/overloaded/inadequate wiring, your homeowner’s insurance will not pay for the damages.

Permits don’t usually cost very much, but not having important work done by the pros and the followup inspections can cost you a whole lot.

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