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I finished my basement without a permit, will it effect my home sale?
Q. I finished my basement without a permit, will it effect my home sale?
A. Doing work without a permit can create a problem when selling down the road. However, there is no straightforward answer as to what to expect when selling. Most municipalities require a permit for finishing a basement or attic, additions, major remodels, pools, fences, and additional structures such as a deck or shed. But some municipalities are stricter and want permits for a variety of jobs (i.e. replacement of windows, roofs, and hot water heaters, and some electrical and plumbing work).
Sellers are required by Pennsylvania state law to fill out a property disclosure. In the disclosure, it asks what changes/additions/remodels have been done to the property, whether or not a permit was required for the work, and whether or not a permit was obtained. So all sellers should expect to disclose this information to potential buyers.
There are three potential areas where the sale could have a problem due to the lack of a permit. First and foremost is the buyer. The buyer (sometimes at the urging of the home inspector) may ask the seller to obtain a permit “after the fact.” This means going to the municipality and ... more

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