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2003 News from Mecklenburg County

April 2, 2003


Charlotte, NC - April showers may bring May flowers, but it also brings Harry Homeowner out of his living room, for a little repair and remodeling around the house. Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement reminds residents to obtain the necessary permits when starting spring remodeling jobs. Getting the proper permit will ensure that your project is safe and up-to-code, will save you money by ensuring your contractor is licensed, and may help get your loan approved.

So when do you need a permit? Generally, a permit is required for any building construction, alteration or repair that involves new or changes in use of property, other than ordinary repairs. If you're not sure if you need a permit, just call the County's Residential Technical Answer Center at 704-432-RTAC (7822).

Here are some examples of work that needs a permit:

· Any work exceeding $5,000.· Any change to load-bearing structures.· Decks, carports, garages, and backyard storage buildings.· Room additions, including finishing an attic space.· Installing or replacing light fixtures. · Replacing and reconnecting furnaces, dishwashers, water heaters, etc.· New sink or water closet.· Lawn irrigation system.· Kitchen cabinet replacement.· Sub-floor repairs.

Some work doesn't require a permit, including roof replacement of same type if less than $5,000, vinyl siding if less than $5,000, fuses and light bulbs, repair of cord-connected equipment such as lamps, washers, dryers, etc., repair of plumbing lines, repair or replacement of faucets, and window replacement of the same size.

Check Your Contractor: Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement encourages homeowners to beware contractors who recommend not obtaining permits. They may claim it will delay the job or increase property taxes. But contractors who don't want to get a permit may not be licensed and may not have the knowledge to build in compliance with the N.C. Building Code. When the contractor is paid and gone, the homeowner becomes responsible for any problems.

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