What happens if I do work without obtaining a permit
  • First and foremost a permit must be obtained to ensure the work performed, or installation of a product, is done in accordance with the MA Building Codes and local regulations. The building department is in charge of ensuring this work is done properly to protect the safety of the occupants of the structure. It is in your best interest to call the building department to inquire if a permit is required if you are unsure. As the homeowner, you are ultimately responsible for any and all improvements on your property.
  • Your insurance company can refuse to pay for claims for water, wind, fire, or vandalism damage or a personal injury claim that involves unpermitted improvements; i.e. new structures such as additions, decks, and swimming pools, just to name a few.
  • You could be in violation of the building code; this can lead to fines and a potentially expensive path to rectify the violations. These violations could include flood zone regulations as well.
  • There are no tax savings as you will be assessed on the improvements during a re-evaluation from the Assessors.
  • In the event that you sell your home, the banks will become aware of the unpermitted work and will then require the proper documentation to be filed and inspections performed. This could delay the sale of your home significantly.
  • If the work involves an addition or deck that constitutes a zoning violation, it could require a variance from the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA). Failure to obtain approval from the ZBA could result in the removal of any work that violates the zoning bylaws.
  • The permit fee will be doubled for work that is performed without the necessary permits. These fees could be very costly.

Show All Answers

1. How are electrical permit fees calculated?
2. How much is the fee for a water heater?
3. How much will my permit cost?
4. What happens if I do work without obtaining a permit
5. Do I need to obtain a building permit?
6. The Building Commissioner has made a determination with which I disagree. Can I appeal his decision to the Zoning Board of Appeals?
7. What can I expect if I need to request a hearing?
8. I understand that my lot is non-conforming and that I need to obtain special permission from the Zoning Board of Appeals to proceed with my project. What does this mean?
9. Is my lot non-conforming? What does this mean?
10. If I don’t have a plot plan, where can I get one?
11. Can I prepare my own plot plan if I am certain where my property line is?
12. I have a mortgage plan that was given to me by the bank when I purchased my home. Can this be used?
13. Is a plot plan required?
14. Can I call for an oil burner inspection?
15. Can I call for plumbing and electrical inspections?
16. Where should I keep the inspection record card?
17. When I start construction, is the work inspected?
18. My project is completed. How do I get my certificate of occupancy/completion?
19. Once I obtain my permit, how long do I have to start the work? How long do I have to finish my project?
20. How long does it take to obtain a permit?
21. Can I begin work once I submit my application?
22. I just completed gas work at my customer’s home. How do I set up an inspection?
23. My gas fitter just finished the job. Can I call in the inspection?
24. How are gas permit fees calculated?
25. I’ve been having a hard time getting in touch with my gas fitter. Can I come in and pull a gas permit as a homeowner, and not a licensed gas fitter?
26. I have a building permit already. Can I perform necessary gas work under my building permit?
27. I just completed plumbing work at my customer's home. How do I set up an inspection?
28. My plumber just finished the job. Can I call in the inspection?
29. How are plumbing permit fees calculated?
30. I’ve been having a hard time getting in touch with my plumber. Can I come in and pull a plumbing permit as a homeowner, and not a licensed plumber?
31. I am an electrician and just completed the rough wiring. How do I set up an inspection?
32. My electrician just finished the job. Can I call in the inspection?
33. I would like to perform my own electrical work. Can I pull a permit as a homeowner and not a licensed electrician?
34. I hired a general contractor to organize my project and set up all contractors, so he has obtained all the permits that are legally required…right?
35. I have a building permit already. Can I perform necessary electrical work under my building permit?
36. I have a building permit already. Can I perform necessary electrical work under my building permit?