You’ll never hear us complain about a home owner enthusiastically diving into a renovation project. Anything that improves the look, feel or resale value of your home is a welcomed addition in our opinion.
Unfortunately, when it comes to home improvements (even those seemingly minuscule DIY ones) it’s very important that home owners are aware of the specific permitting requirements of their particular county. We don’t mean to dampen your spirits or take the wind out of your DIY sails, but as your eyes and ears in the real estate world, we desperately want to save you from any hurt or headache in the future when you try to sell your home or in the event that you have to submit an insurance claim.
On that note, here are 3 things to keep in mind regarding building permits and making improvements to your home.
1) Know which improvements require permits
The type of improvements that require permits vary by county but as a general rule, anything that has to do with the electrical, plumbing, the HVAC system, the roof or a structural change to the home will require a permit. Things like adding or modifying a deck will change the “footprint” of the home and almost always require a permit. Some counties go as far as requiring a permit of something as simple as installing a kitchen sink. Do your due diligence on the front end and find out which improvements your county requires a permit for.
2) Avoid an insurance debacle
Believe it or not, an insurance company can deny a claim on your home if you or the contractor fail to acquire the necessary building permit. Insurance companies issue home owners policies based on the value of the home, when the policy is put into place. If you make an improvement that increases the value of the home, but the insurance company is unaware of the changes, your new improvements are most likely not covered under your insurance policy and the insurance company can deny your claim.
3) Hire the right professional
When hiring a professional to assist in a home renovation project, it’s important that you work with someone who is not only an experienced builder, but one who is knowledgeable on the necessary permits required for your particular improvements. Hiring an approved and credible contractor, not some random handyman, is the best way to ensure your job will be done right.
In short, the reason counties require permits for additions and improvements isn’t just to nickel and dime you to death. It truly helps prevent unqualified individuals from performing work that will be unsafe for the homeowners and for protecting homeowners investment should the need arise to submit an insurance claim.
No matter how you slice it, buying or selling real estate can be tricky business. If you’re looking to buy or sell a home in the Lake Norman area, let us know how we can put our 12 years of real estate experience to work for you. Call or email Geena today!