Any project that requires a permit must be permitted before any work begins. Starting a project before a permit is issued, or not getting a permit at all, will result in the homeowner being assessed a double fee when the violation is detected.
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You do not need a permit if you are building, installing, repairing or replacing:
Any other work that involves the following requires a building, plumbing or electrical permit:
For residential building projects, including roof work, yard wall construction, porches, or sheds, the homeowner can request the permit and do the work themselves. All heating and cooling work must be completed and permitted by a contractor holding the appropriate license.
For plumbing and electrical work, there is a written test that the city will administer. If you pass the test, you can do the work on your own. If not, you will need to hire a licensed contractor. Anytime you are paying someone else for contracting services, they must be licensed and they must request a permit.
Some residential permits can be issued “Over the Counter”. This means that essentially you, or your contractor, can walk in, apply for and receive the permit while you wait. If you prefer, you can request a complete review of your residential project. All commercial projects, including apartments, require a complete review. The cost of the permit is based on the value of the work being done.
For a building permit, you will need a site plan showing the work that will be done, the property lines and distances from the property lines to the proposed construction. Plumbing, electrical and mechanical permits do not require submittal of any documentation aside from the permit application.
You must have a permit to build a wall more than 2 feet tall. If you are building the wall yourself, you can request the permit. If you are paying someone else to build the wall for you, they must be licensed and they have to request the permit. If the wall is going to be built on a property line, you will need to provide the city with written permission from the property owner on the other side of the wall.
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