Home Building Permit – Are Your Home Plans Permit Ready?

In a previous article relating to frequent stock house plan questions, we discussed the concern of the cost to build a house. We also noted that this is perhaps the most common question that will arise between a homeowner and building designer. Well, there is a second question that seems to come about quite often. It pertains to the issue of getting permission from your local building department to begin construction.

Each state has its own guidelines when it comes to residential construction but it all derives from a common set of standards in home construction. Sometimes these rules and guidelines can vary from city to city and even from county to county within the same city. For this reason, it is important to check with your local building department to verify the guidelines in your particular area before purchasing a set of stock house plans. This is especially true if you are purchasing across state lines.


Can we take the home plans we get from you and obtain a home building permit or do we need anything else?


At the very least you will also need a site plan to show the house location on your property. Your building department may also require mechanical and electrical plans prepared and provided by the respective engineers. Structural calculations may also be required to submit with your building permit application. All of this will be collected by your builder so you should not have to worry about getting these items unless you would prefer to be responsible for these things yourself. If you allow your builder to handle this task, the cost will be inclusive of your total cost for his or her services and you face no additional upfront cost.

If you hire a builder to build you home this is usually a part of their services. Question your builder to be sure of his duties involving this task. However, if your plan is to act as the general contractor and oversee the construction of your own home, then you are responsible for collecting the additional information needed to meet the requirements of the application for the building permit process. This means that you will need to hire a surveyor to provide the site plan, a mechanical engineer for the mechanical plans, a electrical engineer for the electrical plans, and a structural engineer if additional structural details and calculations are needed to complete the permit application.