BRRRR - Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat

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Do I need a permit to perform minor repairs on a BRRR property?

Posted Jun 24 2022, 07:35

I live in TN. My wife and I are looking for a duplex or triplex to house hack/BRRRR. We plan on gaining some equity from value add. My question: Do I need some kind of permit to make cosmetic changes to the house? Like putting in flooring, fixing drywall, repainting in inside and outside, or adding light fixtures? If not, where is the line that tells me what I can or cannot do myself without a permit? Thanks in advance!

Chattanooga, Tennessee

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Eliott Elias
  • Realtor
  • Austin, TX
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Eliott Elias
  • Realtor
  • Austin, TX
Replied Jun 24 2022, 07:54

Call the city and tell them your scope of work. They will be able to tell you

Flooring/drywall and paint usually does not require permitting 

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Andrew Postell#2 BRRRR - Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat Contributor
  • Lender
  • Fort Worth, TX
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Andrew Postell#2 BRRRR - Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat Contributor
  • Lender
  • Fort Worth, TX
Replied Jun 24 2022, 08:19

@Jordan Santley yeah, usually not but as mentioned above, a call to the city will be the right move to make sure.

Lender Texas (#392627)

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JD Martin
  • Rock Star Extraordinaire
  • Northeast, TN
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JD Martin
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  • Northeast, TN
ModeratorReplied Jun 24 2022, 09:42
Quote from @Jordan Santley:

I live in TN. My wife and I are looking for a duplex or triplex to house hack/BRRRR. We plan on gaining some equity from value add. My question: Do I need some kind of permit to make cosmetic changes to the house? Like putting in flooring, fixing drywall, repainting in inside and outside, or adding light fixtures? If not, where is the line that tells me what I can or cannot do myself without a permit? Thanks in advance!


I'm in TN. Depends on where you are. If you are in the county you can do just about anything without a permit. If you are in city limits each city is different but in general homeowners don't need permits to change light fixtures, flooring, painting, repairing drywall, changing kitchen cabinets, replacing non-structural plumbing (faucet, toilet, showerhead), change light switches or outlets. In general, just about anything that happens on the visible side of a wall within the living space. Most cities will require a permit or some proven homeowner knowledge to do anything mechanical (HVAC, electrical, plumbing, roofing replacement, etc.).