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Jun 06

Got permits?

Posted on June 6, 2015 at 11:06 pm by Clay Curtin

Did you know the City’s building division plays an important role in your safety?  Its primary function is to work on behalf of property owners to ensure their construction projects meet the minimum standards for building safety. While the building permit process may seem like an impediment to a project, the time invested to get a permit with proper inspections helps prevent the loss of life and property, and may limit legal liabilities. Some construction projects do not require a building permit; however, the rules can vary between cities, creating confusion for contractors. It is always best to verify permit requirements with the building division in advance. Menlo Park’s list of exempted projects is available online. Work undertaken without a building permit can create unforeseen problems for property owners, including the required disclosure of unpermitted work to potential buyers and loan agencies. To fix this, a permit must be issued and may require opening up some of the work during the inspection to verify code compliance. If the building division discovers unpermitted construction is underway, a Stop Work Order is issued which halts all work and carries a penalty fee. This difficult step is necessary, but taken reluctantly, as the building division’s interest is in seeing projects through to completion in a timely and safe manner.