Contractor Talk - Professional Construction and Remodeling Forum banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Do you always pull a permit even for adding a couple of outlets? I'm in Riverside County, California area.
 

·
Electrical Contractor
Joined
·
2,411 Posts
Well, California being the rule and law capital of the world, I can't say for you.
In my area no. Not nearly.

A few receptacles, almost never.
A one room renovation; sometimes, anything bigger; almost always, (these depend on the GC).
A service, yes.
 

·
DGR,IABD
Joined
·
9,683 Posts
There's a different rule for each community as to when you need to pull a permit.

In my area, I only need to pull an electrical permit for two reasons. One, if it's a new service or a service change. Or, two, if it is involved with construction in which a building permit was issued such as a large rennovation, addition, or new construction.

I think that if you're in Cali, you're supposed to pull a permit to plug in your toaster, but that's just a guess.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
117 Posts
Speedy Petey said:
Well, California being the rule and law capital of the world, I can't say for you.
In my area no. Not nearly.

A few receptacles, almost never.
A one room renovation; sometimes, anything bigger; almost always, (these depend on the GC).
A service, yes.
Pete, Thank goodness you posted that! :cheesygri
I started to give the exact same answer, but was afraid I'd get mauled by the "always get a permit" crowd. The reality is, that a $200 job (adding a couple of outlets) would cost an extra $75 to $100 if you had to pay $40 for the permit, plus the time to go downtown and get it, and the gas you'd burn.
Now, of course, all the work I do is to code; but a permit for a small job isn't practical or necessary most of the time.
Just glad I ain't the only one.

Rhett Watson
 

·
DGR,IABD
Joined
·
9,683 Posts
Atricaudatus said:
Pete, Thank goodness you posted that! :cheesygri
I started to give the exact same answer, but was afraid I'd get mauled by the "always get a permit" crowd. The reality is, that a $200 job (adding a couple of outlets) would cost an extra $75 to $100 if you had to pay $40 for the permit, plus the time to go downtown and get it, and the gas you'd burn.
Now, of course, all the work I do is to code; but a permit for a small job isn't practical or necessary most of the time.
Just glad I ain't the only one.

Rhett Watson
Careful, careful Rhett. Peter never said or even implied that you should not get a REQUIRED permit for a small job. He was simply stating that is is not required in the areas in which he works to get a permit for such small jobs. If the rule in your locality is that you need to pull a permit for small jobs, then you need to get one. It's basic CYA on the part of the contractor, and money well spent.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,471 Posts
My electrician works as a sub and we have been together for 40 yrs. so I feel that I can trust him.

Here, altering a circuit means bringing the entire circuit up to current code. Adding a few recpts. could mean a permit based on the condition of the old circuit. Even if the old circuit and the additional recpts. meets current code, it still must be inspected.

If this is caught during a home transfer, uninspected, it can be hell for you and the sales transaction.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
In my area (Portland, Oregon) we have what they call Minor Labels. These are stickers that we carry with us and attach when the need warrants. With a Minor Label you can do small projects the County and City expect you should know how to do without constant adult supervision. Things like adding one 120v ckt or extending 120v ckt's such as you're asking. There are many others, I would have to get the list out to jog my memory. When you get a book full, you send it in and they may spot check one out of your book, if there is a problem they will check another random location. If they find constant code violations within a shop, they can and will remove your privileges and make you go back to getting everything inspected. Very easy to stay in good graces with the AHJ. Almost forgot, Minor Labels are $20.00.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
14,078 Posts
Reserving the ethics - 1) consider what happens to the homeowner if the place burns down? Will his insurance pay if they find out it was because of un-permited work. 2) Consider will your insurance cover you when the homeowner sues you for his house burning down and his insurance won't cover it?

Something to consider if you care about any of that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Teetorbilt said:
My electrician works as a sub and we have been together for 40 yrs. so I feel that I can trust him.

Here, altering a circuit means bringing the entire circuit up to current code. Adding a few recpts. could mean a permit based on the condition of the old circuit. Even if the old circuit and the additional recpts. meets current code, it still must be inspected.

If this is caught during a home transfer, uninspected, it can be hell for you and the sales transaction.
(40 years) Teetor, how long have you been a contractor? :eek:
 

·
Electrical Contractor
Joined
·
744 Posts
He was the main contractor used on the ARC!
 

·
DGR,IABD
Joined
·
9,683 Posts
Cubevan said:
(40 years) Teetor, how long have you been a contractor? :eek:
I was thinking that Teetor would build Lincoln Log houses on the living room floor and his pal next door (his electrician) would come over and wire them up with Lionel train lighting acessories. That would be about 40 years, give or take.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,471 Posts
I turned 55 in July. My father was a CGC in FL. I went into engineering and worked there for a number of years. I went out on my own in '88 and continue to do freelance engineering, mostly R&D product development.

Mike, my electrician, and I started building scooters together and built some of the most awesome rides on the east coast. Ever hear of a 275 HP Sportster? We did that back in the late '60s. He crashed a lot and is more beat up than Evil Knievel, I've never crashed or dropped a street bike. We reconnected when he moved up here in the early '80's and he was an electrician by then. When I started, he was my go-to guy, still is. If you can't rely on a road brother, shoot him and he'll thank you.
 

·
Electrical Contractor
Joined
·
2,411 Posts
mdshunk said:
In my area, I only need to pull an electrical permit for two reasons. One, if it's a new service or a service change. Or, two, if it is involved with construction in which a building permit was issued such as a large rennovation, addition, or new construction.
I could have written the same reply. The drill in my area is pretty much the same thing. As he also said, if a permit is required for any reason it is pulled, no matter how small.
I have noticed that Marc and I have very similar work environments/situations.

A comment on insurance and payouts. I have heard all this hype about "They will not pay if the work was not inspected". This is just that, hype.
I mean it is fine to scare a DIY into doing the right thing with the fear of insurance retributions, but don't try and fool me into getting a new receptacle I installed permitted and inspected.
Insurance companies will pay in these cases as long as it is not found to be intentional. This is one of the reasons rates are so high. Because of the guy who does not ask for help and does it his way regardless of whether it is correct or safe. This is one of the reasons I frequent DIY boards. I will always give credit to anyone trying to do the right thing.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
14,078 Posts
Speedy Petey said:
A comment on insurance and payouts. I have heard all this hype about "They will not pay if the work was not inspected". This is just that, hype.
I mean it is fine to scare a DIY into doing the right thing with the fear of insurance retributions, but don't try and fool me into getting a new receptacle I installed permitted and inspected.
Insurance companies will pay in these cases as long as it is not found to be intentional. This is one of the reasons rates are so high. Because of the guy who does not ask for help and does it his way regardless of whether it is correct or safe. This is one of the reasons I frequent DIY boards. I will always give credit to anyone trying to do the right thing.
I hope you're right.

My GL policy is very specific in regard to the scope of work I can and cannot do. They are very specific about what they will and won't cover and why. I won't ever take the chance and go up against them. I'm in business, this isn't a hobby. The risk/reward is totally out of wack to save a homeowner $35.00 for a permit in my opinion.
 

·
DGR,IABD
Joined
·
9,683 Posts
Mike Finley said:
I hope you're right.

My GL policy is very specific in regard to the scope of work I can and cannot do.
I think that Speedy was talking about a DIY's homeowner's insurance policy and not about a remodeling contractor's general liability policy. Obviously, if your GL policy only covers you for a certain scope of work, whatever you do outside of that scope is not covered. I think Speedy was relating his experience that a DIY can F-up pretty badly and still have their homeowner's policy pay out, as long as they did't do it intentionally. While this might be true in many cases, I have not had that same experience. In fact, I've personally seen insurance adjustors at the building department researching permit histories (or lack thereof) on recent fire and water damage claims.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
14,078 Posts
Md, I understand that, but regardless of that, if there is a chance the homeowners policy is not going to cover him because of work I did, that is all the same to me.

His house burns down, calls insurance, they tell him to pound salt, he calls me to sue me, I call my insurance, they tell me to pound salt.

No matter what I am screwed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,603 Posts
In my experience insurance adjusting is a crap shoot. In the $1000- $50,000 claims they don't generally nit pick too much and consider the potential for future business. In the 1 mil. + claims they investigate more closely but still are concerned with their reputation. That is my opinion based on no facts just my personal observations. RT
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top