How to start the building permit process in El Paso County, Colorado Springs and surrounding areas? Go to https://www.pprbd.org. Experience! I search out permits early in the process whether I am representing a buyer client or representing a seller client. If you are a homeowner ready to list your home and know that something in your home requires a permit (a basement or A/C unit, circuit breaker etc.), now is the time to address or be prepared to fully disclose to and/or negotiate with a prospective buyer. If you are a buyer and learn that the home you are considering does not have the proper permits you have options: 1) request the Seller to get the proper permit(s) in place, 2) make it part of your Inspection due diligence to have the items professionally assessed and determine how or whether to proceed with the purchase or 3) walk away.
Buyers should be thinking ‘someone at some point will be paying the expense of getting the item permitted’. Note: Building codes change regularly. This season it may mean just having regional building come out, check and assert that the item is permitable and you move on from there. However, if building codes change drastically, it can mean architectural engineers, a full home rewire or ripping out drywall or maybe pursuing a variance. A variance may take some time because approval has to go to a committee. I have pursued a variance because of the adverse structural impact the modification would have on the property and the item in question had been in place for a long time; not too daunting but did impact deadlines and we were at the “mercy” of the committee. That brings me to another point: check your vendors and service providers. Go behind them to verify that they pulled the proper permits. There are times when they get busy and/or an admin drops the ball. It happens. However, you don’t want to have to try to locate them years later only to find out they are out of business or they were on the naughty contractor list (there is a list) for never pulling permits – pocketing that money. What could have been a $300 permit in 2010 can result in a major project expense years later. Once again ‘someone at some point will pay the expense of getting the item permitted’. Think wisely. To search permits in El Paso County go to https://www.pprbd.org. Buying or Selling contact me at 719-200-6940 or visit my website www.ReathaButler.com.
Be Cautious About Renos Without Permits
Some homeowners bypass the permit process when they remodel their home. They may find the process too expensive or cumbersome. Permitting fees can sometimes cost hundreds of dollars or more. Some homeowners may believe that if they go ahead with a kitchen or bath remodel without a permit, they’ll likely never get caught.
But failing to get a permit could be troublesome when they go to sell the home.
Most states require homeowners to fill out a disclosure statement when they go to sell. In that form, sellers are usually asked if they completed work to the home without a required permit. Lying about it can also backfire—the sellers could be sued later by the new homeowner for making false statements.
“You can personally become liable for work carried out without permits,” writes Bill Gassett, a real estate professional with RE/MAX, REALTORS® in New England, for RISMedia’s Housecall. “Maybe the finished basement built by the previous homeowner with the fancy kitchen that sold the home has to be ripped out, or you’ll have to pay a penalty.”
Also, if there’s any incident that was caused by the lack of permits, the homeowner may face a denial of their insurance claim. If their insurance company finds they didn’t have the required permit, they could deny the claim. Many of these denied insurance claims stem from incidents that involve remodeling projects around electricity, gas, or water that were done without the appropriate permits.