Pulling Permits

4 Replies

When will a permit needed to be pulled? for what areas of the job? and what are the requirements that a permit be pulled for work? Any advice will help. Thanks

I think the question you have is very local. But I believe if you contact building and Zoning Department in your area, you will get all these answers.

Building permits are generally pulled at the municipal level so every city and every state has different requirements. Each state has specific building code requirements. Generally speaking anything beyond cosmetic improvements such as paint and carpet would require a permit. Talk to two building inspectors and their interpretation of the state building code will vary. Many landlords change their own windows and doors and even do siding. Is it legal? No. Is it done? All the time. What type of work are you looking to do?

I am going to be buying,fixing and flipping (rehabbing) homes. So your saying all cosmetic work - no permit is needed. Is that also pertaining to advanced cosmetic work such as cabinetry, countertops, doors, windows etc. Or are just for mechanicals?(electrical, HVAC) and advanced ( mold, foundation, structural, additional???). Thanks for the response!  

@Daniel Sisto

Refer to this website if you are going to be flipping in Liverpool, NY: http://ecode360.com/15361271

They use the Uniform Building Code. It has uses some pretty broad language. It says that "improvements" to a building or structure, or any portion thereof, require a permit. They don't specifically list remodeling activities, but they do exempt "repairs" with exceptions. Doors, windows, siding, etc. could require a permit. Structural work definitely will. If you gut a room, they are probably going to want to see the framing (if you changed it), insulation, and any new electrical or plumbing, which may require their own permit. Once it's open, if they don't like it, they can make you fix it. 

It's probably up to the building official. If you call and ask, they may want to take your money and sell you a permit, or they may say don't worry about certain things. Call a contractor or two in your area and ask them what they need permits for.

Every State, County, City, or Town will have different rules and exemptions. The usual suspects that are exempt from a permit are:

Painting, papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, counter tops and similar finish work. There are a bunch of other things, like fences and sheds. Those are specifically listed in the International Codes. See here:


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