5 surprising home projects that need a building permit in D.C.

5 surprising home projects that need a building permit in D.C.
D.C. building permits

D.C. building permits

Before tackling any home improvement project in Washington, D.C. — no matter how minor — you should ask yourself, “Do I need a permit for that?”

As you'd expect, adding on a room addition requires a building permit in D.C. But, so does using fire-retardant paint.

Who knew?

"When it comes to building codes and permits, every [jurisdiction] is different," says Jacques Sirvain of Potomac Homes, a home inspector based in Maryland.

Different is one thing, but for Washingtonians, building permit requirements in D.C. can seem downright odd.

For instance, check out these five things you might be surprised to learn require a building permit in Washington, D.C.:

  • Repairing a fence up to a height of 7 feet
  • Interior demolition of a non-bearing wall
  • Application of fire-retardant paint
  • Installation of a construction trailer
  • Repairs of existing fire escapes

As the homeowner, the ultimate responsibility falls on you to follow the proper building permit procedures, not the contractors who are working for you, Sirvain advises.

“A lot of builders aren’t as good as they should be,” Sirvain says.

That's why it's so important to find highly rated D.C.-area home builders and remodelers familiar with your city's permit requirements.

There is some good news when it comes to D.C.'s building permit process: Applications for some home renovation projects can be made online and be approved with just a few quick clicks.

Other building projects, however, may require a 30-day review period.

Visit the city's Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs for more information about the application process and costs.


More Like This

The top D.C. destination for Halloween? Survey says Arlington, Va.

halloween_lights.jpg

Purple and orange LED lights can give your home a spooky glow for Halloween. (Photo by Katie Jacewicz)
Purple and orange LED lights can give your home a spooky glow for Halloween. (Photo by Katie Jacewicz)

Arlington, Virginia, ranks among the Top 10 places for Halloween fun. Find out why Northern Virginians have cause to dress up and party this spooky holiday.

Post New Comment

Deals

What is Angie's List?

Angie’s List is the trusted site where more than 3 million households go to get ratings and reviews on everything from home repair to health care. Stop guessing when it comes to hiring! Check Angie’s List to find out who does the best work in town.

Local Discounts

Daily deals up to 70% off popular home improvement projects from top-rated contractors on Angie’s List!