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Old 01-21-2008, 11:23 AM
5 posts, read 4,449 times
Reputation: 15


I have a large backyard in my property. And in the back of the house there was a small room 7X7 that was built before I bought the house 4 yrs ago. This was like a small storage room and it was built without the proper permits. So two months ago I hired this crew to make this room larger. It was The room is now 10X12 room and done with all the proper coding, and city requirements. The only thing is that since that first 7x7 room didnt had any city permit I didnt think much of it. But now that the room is finished I am having 2nd thoughts and regret my stupid mistake. so my question is what should I do now? I would like to get the permits and I dont care if my property taxes do go up. So I would like to get city permit for this room and I am now lost. Any sound advice. So what do I need to do now? Any ideas? Would I have to pay any penalties? How can I fix this mess and what should I tell the city folks once I apply for this permit. Should I be honest and tell them that the room was already there but I added a few more feets? I would hate to shoot myself on the foot by been too honest. Please if any of you contractors out there got any great ideas thanks!
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Old 01-21-2008, 12:14 PM
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 12,746,883 times
Reputation: 2172
If you enlarged the foot print of the existing room, the you almost certainly should have gotten a permit. The fact that the original room wasn't permitted is not a factor and you can't go get a permit for the original structure anyway. The county inspectors would just grandfather it in.

I'm a little confused by your description. Did you get a permit for the enlarged structure and new work and have the new work inspected at the proper times? If so, you are fine and need do nothing more. If not, the county can make you tear down the enlarged structure or at a minimum tear down enough so they can do the structural inspections.

You also have insurance issues since the house is now larger.
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Old 01-21-2008, 01:18 PM
3,020 posts, read 25,004,806 times
Reputation: 2790
Default There is probably no standard answer.......

A lot depends on exactly where you are. Some places are pretty slack and pretty much do nothing after the fact. Some places are extremely anal and go completely over the top over any excuse to play God.

I would be inclined to forget about it at this point. If they did not raise a big fuss till now, probably will not be any in the future.

You might just ask around in a very gentle type mode and see what other people say usually happens in your location. Usually you cannot get a "Permit" for something already built. There might be a procedure for making things all legal. From my experience money talks and it would be more a paperwork exercise, surely plenty of paper, meetings and extra payments. The tax man will also be very pleased.

Being where I have been, I would be inclined to forget about it. They have rules you never want to know. I just would not open a can of worms if I didn't have too.

Some places come out and remeasure the house and take pixs, etc every so many years as part of reassetment. Again in my experience, nothing happens, they just raise the taxes but they do that anyway. Let sleeping dogs lie. Let the tax man make up the difference, he will anyway.

Problems like that are a best answered by a good shrug and failure to remember.
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Old 01-21-2008, 02:25 PM
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 12,746,883 times
Reputation: 2172
My ex and I built a whole house ourselves. We bought a shell, got the permits and initial inspections. Got the inspections before closing it up. The drywall took forever (huge house) and the marriage fell apart in the mean time. We eventually got it done and when we asked for a final inspection, the inspector refused to do it because too much time had passed and the codes might have changed. They did nothing about it and we sold the house.

I agree, it might be better to just ignore the whole thing. Just be sure your insurance covers the whole structure.
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Old 01-21-2008, 04:06 PM
Location: Marietta, GA
857 posts, read 4,728,614 times
Reputation: 843
I have added rooms to several of my homes over the years. I live by the addage " It is better to ask forgiveness than to ask permission" so if it is a project that can't be seen from the street I just go ahead and do it. If it is visible from the street I get a permit.
I have owned 15 houses and only once did I have to go to the building dept and get a CO for something added on when I was selling the house. Ironically, it was for something that the owner before me added.
I would just let it go and don't worry about it. Most building depts are short-staffed and won't ever notice it.
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