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  Getting Permits For Home Improvements - Back
Homeowners planning home improvement projects might want to schedule a trip to City Hall or the County Court House because many such projects require a building permit. If a required permit is overlooked, a cost can be incurred when the home is sold.

Homeowners are encouraged to check into their city’s regulations before doing any major home improvements. Home improvements are a great way to add value to a home and can be major selling points, if done properly.

Planning for a home improvement project should follow these steps:

1. Research the improvement. Permits generally are required for building a new deck, roof, fence, wall, driveway or additional room. Permits also are needed for installing new plumbing fixtures or new siding or replacing an electric stove with a gas stove.

2. Obtain a building permit. Contact the local building permit department or office of planning and zoning for a permit application. Submit the application with a copy of the construction plans for approval. If the plans comply with city regulations, a permit will be issued for a fee.

3. Prepare for a final inspection. The city will perform periodic inspections throughout the construction process and upon completion of the project. Make sure the final inspection is perform promptly to ensure proper construction and possibly prevent fines later.

4. Keep detailed records. Keep copies of all the documents from the permit application to the final inspection report in case the improvement project is ever questioned. These records also will come in handy when the home is sold.

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