Do I need a permit to remodel my bathroom?

It is exciting to contemplate a dramatic change to your house, such as a glam new bathroom remodel. But besides price, one of the problems to factor into your strategies of remodeling is what permits can be needed and how much will it cost you. Few cities charge 1% of the total project budget for permits. The short answer to whether or not you require a permit to remodel your bathroom is that permitting requirements change from city to city. There are no federal/state standards when it comes to home remodel permits.

So, it pays to do your homework. Most bathroom remodels will include changes to electrical things and plumbing, and it will need a permit. If you’re doing a DIY bathroom remodel, you need to check with the city to see what permits are needed. If you’re using a licensed contractor for bathroom remodel, they’ll know what permits the job will need. Depending upon the project, few permits can be issued instantly although others will need an inspection of plans.

Drawing and planned Renovation of a bathroom Before and after

Obtaining the appropriate permits is a necessity, particularly when it comes to selling your house. As per the National Association of Realtors, if you fail to get the permits at the time of construction, it can prevent the sale of the house. Not obtaining the permits may cause myriad issues, like work stoppages, more fees, replacing work installed, and complicating selling the home later.

It’s the responsibility of the homeowner to ensure the project holds the appropriate permits. Depending upon your project’s scope, there can be inspections along the way. A final inspection, however, is frequently the most crucial. This final inspection is to make sure that all the inspectors have been to the project physically, personally checked all the work, and have initialed compliance on the permit, so the homeowner and the team follow the inspection progress. This final inspection is important for several reasons. This will be helpful to inform your insurance company of the improvements, appraising when raising your value of the home, and when selling your house to show that all work on your house met local codes. For a few general rules of thumb, consult this list to see which jobs would need a permit.

Permits Most Likely Required

  • Footprint changes to your house involving room additions
  • Installing new or existing plumbing involving new hose bibs for the outside of your house
  • Any new electrical service, involving installing any new electrical wiring/adding circuits
  • Structural changes such as demolishing a load-bearing wall
  • Parking a dumpster on a public street
  • Doing anything with the sewer line
  • Adding exterior doors, windows, and skylights that need a new opening
  • HVAC, like installing a new furnace or air conditioner
  • Replacing a water heater

When you do not need a permit for your bathroom remodel

  • Changing the flooring of the bathroom.
  • Replacing an existing sink.
  • Replacing/adding countertops.
  • Small electrical work such as replacing light fixtures.
  • Replacing an existing toilet.

Your renovator needs to manage all permits since this’s their expertise. You’re legally responsible to obtain the building permit, however, employing the services of a renovator is common and acceptable. Drawings and plans will be needed for the remodel to be approved. The timing of this will be based on your strategies and what investigation is needed. Your contractor can confirm when you require permits so make sure to work with a reputable company or individual. Failing to get your permit prior to renovations will result in negative consequences and when the municipality will check the property, and you will be charged with fines. Not only will you run into trouble with your local municipality but when you place a claim to insurance, they can reject your claim for not having the correct permits.

When you decide to sell your home and an inspection is done and it’s discovered that the structure of your home doesn’t follow the guidelines set out by regulatory bodies, you’ll be responsible to correct this before you can sell your home. The cost of the permit will be based on the permit’s purpose; however, the price of this permit is minimal compared to what you’ll pay if you don’t have a permit. You should have a clear list of renovations in mind ahead of your remodel to ensure that legally, you’re covered to go ahead with the project. Take some time and check your strategies, and see whether a permit will be needed or not.

Getting Permits from a Contractor’s Point of View

Permits are a great thing because they make sure your project is being built safely and to code. There are things that you should know about getting bathroom permits from the eye of the contractor.

  • The permitting time may be extensive. In some states, it may take up to six weeks to get a permit for the bathroom remodeling. It doesn’t always, but it can.  Sometimes you can get an over-the-counter permit if you’re doing a single trade (electrical) permit.
  • The bathroom remodeling project will take longer to complete because you will have to stop for inspections. It’s not an important amount of time, but the city dictates their schedules.
  • Permits drive up the cost of your remodel because there are building needs that one can’t avoid.
  • Even though your contractor doesn’t like permits, it’s an essential evil and it is recommended to pull permits.
  • Determine who’s going to pay for the permit. Generally, the remodeling team from a certain company coordinates getting the permits, but the homeowners are responsible for the permit cost. Every remodeling contractor is different though so ensure you clarify that when you choose the contractor.

If you’re ready to begin digging into a bathroom remodel project, give us a call. Bath Planet of NJ can discuss your dream bathroom, your remodeling budget, the work’s scope, and help to educate you on the remodeling procedure.