Dealing with a city's building department can be a nuisance, depending on where you live. The cost of obtaining permits ups the overall cost of a project. However, skipping the permit process can potentially cost you much more. One homeowner jeopardized a profitable home sale because a significant remodel to the house was done without required building permits. In this case, the renovations added about 1,000 square feet to the building. The buyer's appraiser searched the public record for the recorded square footage of the house. The public record indicated square footage for the building that was far less than the measured square footage. The appraiser refused to give full credit for the additional square footage unless the seller could substantiate that the work was permitted by the local building department. Without full credit for the additional square footage, the house would appraise for much less than the contract purchase price. The buyer wouldn't pay the price he'...
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