A renovation is an excellent way to add a modern, updated look to your home. Plus, it adds value to your home, helping you get top dollar when it’s time to sell. Who doesn’t love stepping into a new bedroom, an extended game room, or a renovated bathroom?
But before you search Pinterest for colors, styles, and design inspirations, you have one crucial step to consider. You need to check whether the remodel requires a building permit from your county or city.
What Are Building Permits and Why Do I Need Them?
Building permits are written authorizations from your country or city that give you the approval for construction. Building permits ensure that your home complies with all building, zoning, and construction codes.
Do I Need Permits For All Remodeling Projects?
Not all remodeling or construction requires a permit, but the majority do. It depends on what you’re constructing and your local building code. Permits vary from county to county and reflect regional issues. For example, most building codes in Central Florida focus on fire safety due to the heat and humidity issues of the region. In rural areas prone to forest fires, buildings must meet strict fireproofing requirements.
Which Home Remodeling Projects Require Permits?
Generally, any project that requires a structural change needs a permit. Some examples include:
- Adding or removing walls
- Re-roofing the house
- Demolishing a portion of a house
- Changing the usage of a room like converting a garage into a bedroom
Which Home Remodeling Projects Do Not Require Permits?
Projects that deal with cosmetic changes do not require permits. These include:
- Adding kitchen cabinets
- Replacing kitchen appliances
- Repainting the house
- Repaving the driveway
- Erecting a small fence
- Installing floor coverings
Besides the building permit, you may also need to obtain special licenses like mechanical, electrical, or plumbing permits, depending on the scope of your project. For example, if you install an underground lawn sprinkler, you need to get plumbing permits. Similarly, you might need a mechanical license when installing a central air conditioning unit.
How to Get Building Permits for Home Remodels in Central Florida
- Check with your city’s building and permit office to see whether your planned remodel requires a permit.
- Submit a permit application along with the site plan. If it’s an extensive project, you might need an architect to help you with the design.
- Schedule an appointment for plan approval. Depending on the project’s scope, it may take a few days or weeks.
- Get the permit before you begin construction. The permit office might send someone over to inspect the property and then issue the approval.
What Happens If I Skip Getting a Permit?
Don’t give in to the temptation of skipping getting the permit. Though getting a permit might be cumbersome and push back your start date, it’s worth the hassle. If the city finds out that you don’t have the license for the remodel, the consequences could be problematic. You may be slapped with high penalties, and in the worst case, you may even have to shut down the project or tear down the work.
It’s not worth the risk. You may also decide that it’s better to sell the house. If you’re wondering, “how can I sell my house fast in Central Florida without spending time on remodels?” reach out to Central FL Houses. We buy houses in Central Florida in any condition for fair prices. Get in touch with our team to sell your home the easy way.