So, you finally decided to clear the cobwebs and fix up your old basement so you can use it for more than storage. You’re probably raring to start, but first, you need to go through the necessary actions to make sure that your plans are safe. Depending on which Chicagoland area you live in, the process may vary to an extent, but the major points are common among all locations. To make your basement renovation easier, here are some steps to take for obtaining the proper permits.
Survey the Condition of the Basement
The first step to take in repairing your basement is inspecting its layout. Are there any problem areas you notice? Maybe you spot cracks in several locations or bowing walls. Take note of what you may need to mend. Further, look for the existing placement of electrical components, windows, walls, smoke detectors, and vents. Then, think about the changes that you want to make.
Talk with Your Contractors About the Renovations
After you have an idea of what direction you want to go in, talk with your contractors. Experts can advise you on the nature of any issues and the options available to you, allowing you to take the best course of action. Utilize their knowledge to pay attention to the electrical, plumbing, and HVAC layout so that your plans properly follow the standards set by your area. For instance, it is often standard to space electrical outlets 6’ from every door and 12’ apart on every wall. Sometimes, the design of your basement may also necessitate regulatory compliance on additional aspects, such as emergency escapes and ceiling height.
Obtain Your Basement Plan and Contract
Once you agree with your contractor on how to proceed, obtain a basement plan to outline your intended renovations and sign a contract with them. You will need the basement plan to get your remodeling approved by the local government. The contract will state explicitly what work you plan to complete, the start and end dates, payment, and proof of licensure/authorization on the part of the company. It may also go over the procedure for any changes to the initial contract.
Apply for a Building Permit
With your plans firmly set, you will have to submit a building permit application to your local government office. Most areas offer their building permit applications online. You can then download, print, and fill them out before traveling to the respective office to turn them in. To avoid wasted time, check to see what other documents you need along with the application, which may include the basement plan and signed contract.
Schedule an Inspection
Even after approval, you’ll need to schedule inspections as work on the basement proceeds. Inspectors will check that everything is going as planned and up to code. Remember that it may take a few business days from the date of application for the inspection to occur.
A basement renovation can often be a lengthy and arduous process, especially if your basement has a lot of deterioration issues. Make repairs easy with The Real Seal. We offer waterproofing, foundation repair, and crawl space restoration services and make it a point to keep you informed every step of the way.