Plumbing Permit – Do I Need One?
Late last year we talked about why you should pull permits for plumbing repairs. This time we will get a little deeper into the process of pulling a plumbing permit and why. Only a licensed professional, or in some cases the homeowner, can pull a plumbing permit. As a homeowner if you are requested to pull a plumbing permit for someone who presents themselves as a professional, that person is more than likely to be unlicensed. You may get a better price for unlicensed work but that carries a risk of poor craftsmanship and even substantial fines for the property owner. It can be quite time consuming for the plumbing company and add a little cost to the plumbing services, but the benefits far outweigh the savings.
You may be wondering which services require a plumbing permit. This is determined by the individual municipalities and counties where the work is being conducted. Most of the time it is for major plumbing services like home water re-pipes, main sewer line replacements, and water heater replacements. Pulling the proper plumbing permit protects the homeowner or commercial property owner against substandard work, and creates a public record that the plumbing services were completed to local code requirements and inspected. This can be a real advantage when selling, refinancing, or insuring the property.
So yes, for major plumbing repairs you need to pull the proper plumbing permit.
Plumbing Permit – Overview
Once the determination is made that a permit is required for the plumbing services, your plumbing contractor accesses the public property records to determine zoning, ownership, and property descriptions that are required by the permitting authority where the property is located. Some require that the plumbing permit be posted at the job site, many do not have this requirement. Additionally, if the work requires a permit and the value of the work is $2500.00 or greater, another legal document known as a Notice of Commencement (NOC) is required. This is a notarized document that certifies that the work was done with the knowledge and authorization of the owner or the owner’s representative. It is recorded with the County Court and a certified copy of the NOC is delivered to the appropriate building department to be attached to the plumbing permit. Only then will then the permitting authority allow the property to be inspected and the permit to be finalized and closed.
Plumbing Permits – Step by Step
- Plumbing services that requires a permit are identified and an internal company request is made for a plumbing permit to be pulled.
- The plumbing company permit specialist researches the property in public records and gathers the necessary property information.
- An application is filed by the plumbing services contractor or their agent. This may be in person or online depending on the permitting authority.
- If the plumbing permit requires a Notice of Commencement (NOC), the permit specialist prepares this legal document and secures the notarized signature of the owner or authorized person for the property.
- The document is hand delivered to the county courthouse for recording and to secure a certified copy.
- The certified copy of the NOC is delivered to the building department to be attached to the plumbing permit and an inspection can now be scheduled when work is completed.
- When the plumbing service is complete and ready for inspection, a date is set for the inspection. No permitting authority allows a specific time of day for appointments so the owner or a designated person may need to be available all day on the day of inspection if access to the interior of the home is required.
- The inspection is completed and passes, or approval is withheld if even one criteria needs attention. If so a follow up inspection is scheduled to complete the job.
- When the job is complete, the plumbing company’s permit specialist follows up to verify approval and all necessary paperwork is completed.
So there you go. And remember, if a plumbing company indicates that a permit needs to be pulled, it is not as a means of making more money. It is so the consumer is protected and will have the peace of mind that they received quality craftsmanship and the work is done to local codes. If you have any questions leave a reply and I will update the post to answer.
Who’s Got Plumbing??? We all do! See ya soon.