If you are planning to finish your basement, add a bathroom, build a deck, patio or even install a shed, fence or swing set in your yard… read below! To save you time and money in the long run, every “project” around the house should start with this simple question…do I need a permit?
If you are doing any construction, renovation, repair or remodeling, you’ll want to find out what permits are necessary BEFORE starting. Depending on the codes adopted by your local municipality, you may need a permit for more than you might imagine.
Before answering the questions above, let’s answer the question why are “permits” even required?
Well, contrary to all of the reasons you may hear from people who don’t get them before starting a project, permits are issued for YOUR protection. They ensure that the proper codes are followed; installation/work is done properly; and that the contractor is insured and registered with the municipality to protect you and your property from ‘fly by night’ contractors.
Permits result in site inspections which allow the Code Official to ensure the residents are getting what they contracted for and to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public. Now do permits still sound like something you should avoid?
More than likely all you’ll need to do to find out what permits are required by your local municipality is to go to their website. Once there, search for a link to “codes”, “inspections”, “forms”, or a similar keyword. If you can’t find anything, call the municipal office and they can direct you to the right person.
So what happens if you don’t get permits?
Well, if you live in a municipality that requires a use & occupancy inspection prior to renting or selling your property you may be required to make corrections to or remove the “projects” completed without permits. However, each of the municipalities in Chester County is different and the severity of the consequences vary depending on where you live.
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