So you want to build a sunroom. You may be wondering if you might need a permit. The answer is, almost always, yes.
How to Obtain a Permit
To acquire a permit for your own building, there is a large process you must go through. There are two ways of getting a permit: Do it the hard way (on your own), or hire a trustworthy contractor to do it for you. We’ll look at the hard way first.
The first step, before you’ve made any plans, is to consult the local code official. You’ll want to ask about regulations that might impact your sunroom plans.
The next step is to create the plans and design. This is a very complicated process that should be done by a professional in the field, and it is not advised to attempt it on your own. Keep in mind that any electrics will most likely require professional installation to comply with the local regulations. The plans and design must be submitted for approval later on, and will likely be turned down if you made them without professional assistance.
You may schedule a meeting with the local code official to help with your plans. Depending on the official and how busy they are, it may be months before you can find an opening.
The next process is to apply for your permit. You’ll be required to provide the large amount of necessary documentation and pay fees, averaging around $500 dollars for sunroom additions.
The building department will then review your proposal. After up to a month, you’ll receive word of the permit’s approval or its rejection. If the permit is rejected, you’ll have to make changes to the plan and then reapply. Each time, it can take up to a month to be approved.
During the building process, there will be periodic inspections, to ensure your project is up to code and that the parameters of the permit are followed. You may get in trouble if you fail to meet a requirement.
Once the building process is finished, the sunroom will be inspected and either approved or rejected. If you don’t want it to be rejected, go for the easier, safer, and simpler method.
To summarize, in order to build any kind of sunroom, no matter how small, a permit is indeed necessary. Seems like a lot of hoops to jump through? You’re right.
That’s why you should hire a reliable contractor to handle it for you. Not only do contractors work with you to get the best possible outcome for your plans, but they do the hard work of building for you. A contractor will get the necessary permits with minimal hassle on your part, and also deal with all of the inspections. It is true that you must pay a contractor, but the price is undoubtedly worth it when you consider the complications that can arise if you attempt to build a sunroom on your own.
What Happens If I Don’t Get a Permit?
If you sidestep a permit, there are many issues that can arise:
- A house with additions that were not approved may not be able to be sold.
- The sunroom may not be up to code.
- Structural damage will not be covered by homeowner’s insurance.
- If the municipality finds out, you may be issued a violation. This means that you will be required to pay fees, likely much higher than if you had simply gotten a permit or even hired a contractor, and go through the entire permit process. If you do not comply or an inspection fails, some municipalities may require the teardown of the unpermitted structure!
All of these are expensive problems. If you want nothing to do with them, you need a permit, and the best way to get a permit is to hire a contractor.
Elite Gutters and Sunrooms handles all of the permit work for you. You can trust us to make this complicated and difficult process as smooth as can be.