Do you ever get "permits"?

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On Monday, May 25, 2015 at 8:11:57 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I know of a case here where a guy built a deck in his backyard. The inspector was driving by and saw it. He wound up having to tear it down and start over. IDK for sure the root cause was that it could not be properly inspected now that it was built, eg footers, but suspect that was probably it. Either that or there was some other fatal visible flaw, that could not be corrected by redoing just a minor part of it.
I also know of a whole condo complex that was built with just a shovel of concrete thrown under supporting posts for deck footers. And that was inspected...... Some years later, the FBI arrested the mayor and found $50K in his attic, which gives you an idea of what was going on.....
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That's just sad. In San Jose, CA downtown area is a 'short' bank building, near Taylor and 1st Street. Architecture is just NOT right. The story behind it is that a well-known builder/developer, who shall remain nameless, just started building it! Got the first story done and FINALLY someone in the city permit department stopped the building process. The builder wanted six stories, but only got one, so the building has a strange look to it.
Same builder on a VERY large building did not have proper drains in his planning, so he told one of the workers to just chop a hole between parking floors to let the water drain down through !! , several floors. Even that employee knew better.
I once went to City Council meeting whhere this builder was obtaining huge residential building construction, six buildings of four stories each. The plans of each 'residence' he presented to the Council showed really nice floor plans, with even a 'Den' for the resident's home office. And of course a pool to service the large complex. Being an Engineer, I started scaling the drawings to see what each 'home' would look like and found the Den was approximately 7 ft by 7 ft !!! I have walk-in closets bigger than that. EVERYTHING was scaled to be tiny!
Oh, well, the complex was built, but of course no pool, the pool was in the plans to get the site approved. No intention of building it there because there was a municipal swimming pool soon to be built two blocks away, so why bother? The residence can WALK to the city's public pool, the exercise will be good for them, eh?
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wrote:

You need a permit to post to alt.home.repair. We'll need to see a copy of your permit? :)
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I always get permits for major projects, like building our garage, building our house, and remodeling projects at my in-laws house. I also get permits if there are major electrical changes, like running a new service to a building, primarily because the power company won't connect without one. And I get permits for things like a woodstove installation where there are safety concerns and/or could affect my homeowner insurance. On big projects it's nice to have the inspectors second opinion to make sure I didn't overlook anything. Codes change and I can't keep up on everything.
However, I don't bother with most small projects. Adding an electrical outlet, rewiring a heating circuit, running a subpanel to a shed, building a small shed, constructing a small retaining wall, replacing a water heater, etc. Many of these don't need permits anyway, but I do my best to follow or exceed the codes for each project, even if I am not getting a permit.
There were a couple of projects like replacing the windows at my in-laws or replacing the roof on our house that I didn't realize I was even supposed to get a permit for. To me those were just basic maintenance items like painting, or replacing a broken faucet or something. I didn't learn I should have gotten a permit for those till long after the projects were finished. My bad for not checking I guess, but I still performed the work well above the code minimums.
I don't know if it would matter to the building department, but we always document repairs and improvements with lots of photographs. We do it mostly for our own reference and memories, but I would be able to show how each step was done if they questioned the work.
Anthony Watson www.mountainsoftware.com www.watsondiy.com
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On Wed, 27 May 2015 14:51:20 +0000 (UTC), HerHusband

There is no reason people should have to get a permit for replacing windows or a roof, or changing a water heater, or anything like that. All it amounts to is government finding a way to steal more money from us. And for that matter, if we didn't do these repairs, they would cite us for violations or condemn our home, even on our own land. As long as people keep paying for senseless permits, and kissing ass to local and federal politicians, the less freedoms we will have. People no longer have the balls to stand up against these crooks, who think they can do anything they want to screw people. I own my land, and what I do on my land is MY BUSINESS, not theirs.
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Most permits make sense from the standpoint of safety or impact to the neighborhood, but I admit I don't understand the reasoning behind those permits. It's a good idea for contractors doing work for others, a secondary eye to make sure the job is done right. But I can't imagine a homeowner doing their own work even thinking about a permit for something like replacing a water heater.

Good luck with that. Let me know how it works out for you... :)
Take care,
Anthony Watson www.mountainsoftware.com www.watsondiy.com
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On 5/27/2015 10:51 AM, HerHusband wrote:

Problem with a roof is that it is easily seen and can be reported. No one ever came to inspect a few roofing jobs I had done but the town took the money. In many cases, the money is all that matters.
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On 05/27/2015 08:35 PM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

It may not be just the fee that is charged: if the municipality knows that the property has been upgraded, doesn't that give them an excuse to up the taxable value and therefore the taxes as well?
Perce
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On Wed, 27 May 2015 21:06:00 -0400, "Percival P. Cassidy"

Perhaps if it had no roof to start with?? Maintenance should NEVER trigger a tax increase. Added features like finishing a basement - yes. Like paving a gravel driveway? yes. Like adding a pool? yes. Replacing windows? no. Adding a patio door inplace of a window? Sure - I can see that.
As for permits - anything involving possible structural integrety - sure. Anything changing the basic footprint of the house - sure. Major pluming or electrical ALTERATIONS, yes. Maintenance? Nope.
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On Wed, 27 May 2015 23:34:47 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

There was one municipality around here (SW Fla) that thought simply replacing a bad snap switch or receptacle should trigger a permit. I laughed at the AHJ until I figured out he was serious. Government run amok.
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Believe it or not, the local municipal government requires a permit for ethernet and/or telephone jacks.
The permit fee is $50 and inspection fee is $120 (for up to 10 jacks) so adding a jack or two would cost the homeowner $170 just for the permit. And since these clowns only inspect from 9am to 4pm, I'd have to take vacation time from work to get the actual inspection.
Can you say scofflaw?
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On 5/27/2015 11:34 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

The problem is, where do you draw the line? Is adding a receptacle something you need a permit for?
I'd guess that for anyone here, the answer is no. We know what wire to use for a 15A or 20A circuit.
Many years ago I was installing a storm door on a new house in a big development. Homeowners typically added a lot of things like that as well as finished basements into family rooms. I was installing the door on a walkout basement. The new homeowner was finishing the room with studs and paneling. He added four receptacles and had them wired up. He used #18 lamp cord.
Had I not been there, the wall would have been closed up and who knows what would have happened. Maybe they would use a space heater and start a fire. So, is inspection needed?
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On Thursday, May 28, 2015 at 2:50:52 PM UTC-4, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

The answer in NJ would be yes, a permit is required.

That's a good example of where things go wrong. Only problem is that most of the dummies that would do the above, also wouldn't go get the permit either.
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33 years ago when househunting prior to buying our current home, we saw SEVERAL homes with the basements wired with inappropriate wiring - including 3 wire extention cords, and outdoor telephone wire (2 copper coated steel conductors arranged like the old twinlead television cable. So yes, inspection is a GOOD thing - even though it's a royal pain for those of us who know what to do and how.
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On Thursday, May 28, 2015 at 8:43:11 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Obviously permits and inspections didn't prevent what you saw from happening. Gee, I wonder why?
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On 5/29/2015 8:14 AM, trader_4 wrote:

Sounds like the people who get permits are the ones most likely to be doing a good quality job?
One time, I saw extension cord wire used to supply power to condensing units in a refrigeration system. Got to wonder. Musta been out of Romex or BX that day?
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Fri, 29 May 2015 09:12:28 -0400, Stormin Mormon

Nobody said requiring permits and inspections would stop people from doing stupid things like that. I just said inspections were a good idea. IF the guy called for the required inspection, it woud be caught.

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On Fri, 29 May 2015 12:49:37 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

That is certainly the optimistic view but when your typical municipal inspector leaves the shop in the morning with 30 inspection tickets spread out over the whole county, there is a limit to what they actually "inspect". A lot is taken on faith. It is one reason why I was not a municipal inspector. When I was working for the state, I had no real time constraints and I could poke around a lot more.
Personally I think "owner/builders" should be paying double for their permits and get more scrutiny/assistance from the inspector. Most homeowners would not agree and they seem to enjoy "getting over" on the inspector, even if their safety is at stake.
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On 5/29/2015 12:28 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I recently had an electrical panel replaced and solar panels put on the roof. The city inspector came out three times. Once to check the electrical before the stucco was replaced. Once to check the water barrier and wire before the stucco was put in. Once to check the stucco repair. He was very thorough though I had to explain a couple of things to him. 1. that it was a 200A panel with a 150A main breaker so the wires from the pole were actually sufficient for 150A. 2. That the secondary panel for the solar could be connected directly to the bus bar because it was within sight of the main panel.
I did find one thing that the idiots replacing the panel screwed up and I need to get them to come back out.
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On 5/29/2015 3:28 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

In many towns it is the opposite. Homeowners pay half what a business pays.
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