Not where I am -- but it may be different where you are. Your best bet is to
call the local building inspection authority and ask them. That's the only way
you're going to get an answer you can rely on.
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Many areas will "require" a permit to hang a picture on the wall (tongue in
cheek), but other than collect the fee and make you fill in some paperwork
will do nothing other than issue the permit. They don't have the time or the
inclination to inspect such minor work. I wouldn't bother but then I usually
install or build to "better than code".
On Mon, 04 Jun 2007 18:18:02 -0000, " email@example.com"
The government will sell a permit to anyone for anything if you let
them. It's pure profit for them. I believe in the "Dont Ask, Dont
Tell" policy. They dont know everything that exists in every home in
their city. Of course this all depends on where you live too. I live
in a rural area and we only need permits for major consruction, such
as a new home, large home additon, garage, barn, etc. We dont need
them for a small deck or porch, small garden shed, and definately not
to replace or change a ceiling. Now if you live in the "communist"
state of CA, you better get a permit everytime you walk the dog or
change a faucet washer.....
Once you go to their office, they surely will see dollar signs flash
in front of their face and will find some excuse to sell you a permit.
On Fri, 08 Jun 2007 18:37:07 -0500, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Nonsense. What requires a permit and what does not is very well spelled
out in the municipal building code.
And I find the notion of "profit" in a govermnent context quite amusing.
Great advice. Until the OP wants to sell that house.
Yes, they do. They have a record of every permit pulled, including those
covering the original construction.
If an inspection is required before the house can be sold (as is the
case in the rural community that I live in), what happens with changes
and additions depends on just how through the inspector is and whether
or not the work was obviously done after construction and would have
required a permit.
The consequences could be as bad as a fine (that is probably many times
more expensive than the original permit would have been) and an order
that would prevent the sale of the house until the work was torn out.
I just don't see what's so difficult about ASKING the AHJ if a permit is
required, and then following though accordingly.
On Mon, 11 Jun 2007 17:40:30 GMT, Edwin Pawlowski wrote:
I have sold three houses, and there were inspections by the AHJ in every
case. These were in Hamilton Township, Mercer County and Clinton
Township, Hunterdon County - both NJ.
You do know that a Certificate of Occupancy has to be issued to close a
sale, don't you? The AHJ won't issue a CO without an inspection. At the
time of inspection, the AHJ has the right and authority to look for
unauthorized work. Seems perfectly reasonable to me. You wouldn't want
to move into a house where some hack had done a bunch of electrical
work, or gas plumbing, or something else that wasn't inspected and that
had the potential to cause you harm, would you?
I don't know what "AHJ" stands for???
A CO certainly isn't a requirement for a sale to close in many (I'd even
venture most) jurisdictions.
There is a requirement in most (is it all now? I don't know) states for
a disclosure form to be supplied by the seller to a prospective buyer,
but for all jurisdictions I've been in, any actual inspection is a
requirement placed by either the buyer or perhaps the lending
institution, not something with any actual legal authority.
As for the rhetorical question, it's a mixed bag -- if I were buying a
property w/ the intent of moving in and expecting to live in it w/ no
upgrades/maintenance required, sure I'd want anything _significant_
found in an inspection taken care of. OTOH, maybe I'm looking for a
"fixer-upper" or similar and I'd far prefer to take the house "as-is"
and use sweat equity to fix it up rather than have to pay up front.
And, that doesn't even begin to address the philosophical front of
whether it's "big gov't's" role or that of the buyer. Many are more on
the side of the latter than the former...
Authority Having Jurisdiction. Shorthand for whatever government agency
has its hand in this.
News to me, but then I've only sold and purchased homes in NJ.
I've had to move an electrical outlet (closer to a "shop light"
flourescent fixture in the basement so as to eliminate an extension
cord), repoint a masonry chimney, and repair an exterior railing to
satisfy an AHJ in previous sales. All clearly code issues.
As the buyer, I do not interact with the AHJ, and I think (not certain)
that any inspection I purchase will come after the AHJ has given
approval. I do know that inspection reports I have received have not
called out code issues.
Requirement for inspection by AHJ here is in addition to and separate
from anything required by the buyer. Real estate disclosure is required
here, and again is separate from government inspection; it includes all
issues known to seller, including things that would not be covered by an
inspection such as easements and deed restrictions. Real estate agents
suggest that buyers order an inspection from an independent provider,
but this is not mandatory.
I agree about a "fixer". I do not know what provision the law here makes
for such a thing. I have seen real estate listings specify "structure
as-is", essentially disclaiming suitability for occupancy. In such a
case, I think buyer is buying the land, and no CO would be forthcoming.
Just a guess, but I think a very small minority of buyers are looking
for or would be willing to purchase a fixer.
It is my understanding that as a seller, I would NOT have the option to
negotiate code issues, found by the AHJ, with the buyer.
I (obviously) don't know NJ law, but somehow I'm having a hard time
believing there is force of law behind much of this as far as closing on
a sale. I can believe local jurisdictions may have requirements for a
CO prior to actually occupying a dwelling, but having a much harder time
believing they can prevent a willing seller/buyer from consummating a
transfer of title to a dwelling prior to it meeting all current code(s)...
That just "doesn't sound right". I could see where for a typical
homeowner/buyer it might "look" like that, but there has to be a way for
dilapidated properties, for example, to be bought/sold--otherwise, they
never would be and I really don't think that's the case.
None of this is meant as a personal castigation, I'm just thinking the
details of the law and how it may appear for "ordinary" transactions
aren't totally in consonance...and, of course, I _could_ be wrong... :)
Something similar to this came up not too long ago and I did a web
search for state laws in (I really want to say it was NJ) and came up w/
basically the same thing as other states -- the disclosure form was all
that was actually in state law. Inspections were optional (although
highly recommended to the buyer of course) and noted as possibly being
required by lenders for example to qualify a loan, but not required by
the force of law. That search, obviously, was at the state level and
local jurisdictions can do more, but probably not too much more or they
would have such a rebellion from property owners who couldn't divest
that can't seem them being able to go that far...
IMO, ymmv, $0.02, etc, etc., etc., ... :)
Current codes? No! Unless work had been done w/o a permit. Then they
might enforce current. Otherwise I'm sure typical grandfathering
And I can tell you that my personal experience in selling is contrary to
your belief. The AHJ did inspect prior to closing, and did require
repairs before closing could take place.
As I said before, I have no first hand experience with "as-is" sales,
dilapidated or otherwise. I am sure provisions exist.
My personal experience says you are, at least around here. And not just
for the initial sale of new construction, but for resale as well.
I'll have to dig and see if I kept any of that paperwork ...
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