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Old 03-08-2012, 07:36 PM
 
532 posts, read 491,926 times
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Who would/should I contact about an estimate to get unpermitted space in a home permitted?

Anyone here been through this and care to share an estimate of expenses, time, etc?

This is for a home we are currently under contract to purchase, and the additional sq/ft is substantial. The sellers want to pass this on to us either through a reduced selling price or possibly paying expenses at closing.

Thoughts?
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Old 03-08-2012, 08:34 PM
 
Location: Morrisville, NC
3,663 posts, read 3,461,617 times
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The first thing I would do is call the Cary Inspections dept. They have dealt with it before and can tell you what you might need to have uncovered.

If everything is done per code and it's just drywall that needs to be removed and patched it might not be that bad.
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Old 03-09-2012, 04:36 AM
 
Location: near Cary High School/Cary Towne Mall
226 posts, read 651,913 times
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Default Permitting: Previously Performed UN-permitted work

Unfortunately this is a frequent occurrence.

Step 1 is to research the tax records to determine whether the work was permitted and any if any inspections were performed. Sometimes the project is left "open" for a variety of reasons and the "rough in" portion was inspected and only the "trade finals" were missing.

Step 2 is to verify whether the work was performed by licensed tradesmen (electrical, plumbing, HVAC). We hear stories where homeowners hire trade contractors to get the project started and serve as their own general contractor and perform much of the work themselves but fail to complete the permitting process.

Step 3 is to schedule an on site visit by an inspector from the municipality who has jurisdiction over the property.

Some municipalities will address this issue by levying a higher initial inspection fee (sometimes double), requiring that areas be exposed for a visual inspection, contracting with a licensed contractor to make corrections, and on occasion, involving a structural engineer to "sign off" on the unpermitted work.

Step 4 is to determine if the local taxing authority will require the payment of any back taxes or penalties for the creation and use of this space. Without the proper permits and inspections of the work it was likely not reported to the tax assessor. It may be that the annual property taxes will be assessed in arrears back to the date of construction.

As long as the building codes were followed during construction and you can prove it, this could be a relatively minor inconvenience that is solved by some paperwork, time, and money. If not, there may be some significant "deconstruction" required to make corrections.

Each project is different. Some can be corrected and properly permitted in a few days with only cosmetic repairs required. Others require weeks and tens of thousands of dollars to bring all the work into compliance.

An experienced, licensed, insured, contractor should know all this and be able to guide you through the process rather easily.
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Old 03-09-2012, 06:29 AM
 
532 posts, read 491,926 times
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Thanks. DMd you!
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:12 AM
 
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I never understood why people don't follow the permit process in the first place. Seems like it causes more trouble when it comes time to sell than just following the permit process would have been.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:26 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
19,691 posts, read 31,496,365 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evaofnc View Post
I never understood why people don't follow the permit process in the first place. Seems like it causes more trouble when it comes time to sell than just following the permit process would have been.
So you get three bids for an attic conversion, after a few months of trying.

Two are from legit contractors.
The third is the low bid, but the guy has great references from friends.
He also doesn't have a Town of Cary Privilege License, so he cannot pull permits.

Many people take the third bid without thinking ahead.
We are all never going to move.......
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:29 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
10,417 posts, read 18,013,149 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evaofnc View Post
I never understood why people don't follow the permit process in the first place. Seems like it causes more trouble when it comes time to sell than just following the permit process would have been.
In most cases, it is actually ILLEGAL not to permit; however, in years past, I don't think most people knew this. Or, they simply wanted to save the money.

Years ago, people finished off a basement or an attic and it was a DIY project. Unfortunately, when it comes time to sell, most buyers want to know that the work was done properly and to code.

I had my deck enlarged and the guy who did it did not even ask me if I wanted a permit. I was the one that told him to pull the permit and he looked at me and said..."it is going to cost an extra $50!". Like after paying hundreds of dollars to build the deck, I was going to say no to an extra $50?!!

That extra $50 was worth it since I KNEW that the deck was then going to be inspected by the city and that it was up to code.

After that, I actually had an electrician do some work in my house and he automatically pulled a permit. When the city inspector came to the house, he asked me if there had been a permit for the deck. I was somewhat surprised he asked. He said that was his job. When he is called out to inspect, he also looks around to see if any other projects were done without an permit (inspection) and then he followed up when he went back to his office to verify the permit was pulled. If he found out that it wasn't pulled, it was his job to fine the homeowner!

Vicki
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:30 AM
 
532 posts, read 491,926 times
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It's even more complicated because the current sellers didn't do the work. It was done many years ago....... Don't know when or which owners.

All we know is that it's not original construction. And that it is not permitted.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Holly Springs
317 posts, read 399,777 times
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Call it heated and cooled storage and call it a day. That way you are not including it in the square footage and it will be up to whoever what they want to consider it.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:40 AM
 
532 posts, read 491,926 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pfish923 View Post
Call it heated and cooled storage and call it a day. That way you are not including it in the square footage and it will be up to whoever what they want to consider it.
That's crossed my mind but I don't think the sellers will go for it. Reduces the size by almost 1000sq/ft and they would have to reduce the selling price accordingly.
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