We all have done it, a little work here, a little work there, heck it is our own house right? But, when does that little work around the house go from little work to needing a permit?
Well, that isn't a question I can answer easily, because each city has a different set of guidelines to what has to be permitted and what doesn't.
But, when in doubt...ASK! Why? Because this next story was from a person in my farm in Beaverton, Oregon that thought it was better to ask for forgiveness than permission. Because of it, he not only had to pay the legal costs to the HOA, but tear down his new garage that wasn't permitted.
What had happened is he thought he had plenty of room to build a RV garage for himself and get around the HOA rule of no RV parking. Well, the HOA went after him for not getting it permitted and said it was too close to the neighbor's house now and he would have to tear it down.
He lost! The HOA rules clearly stated that buildings had to be at least 50 feet apart. His new RV garage made him within 40 feet. The HOA was seeking the removal of the garage and their legal fees paid. He thought, fine, I'll get it permitted and go around the HOA. The permit department said he had to tear it down because it didn't meet other safety issues. He was pretty livid when I was talking to him and asking him why he was tearing it down.
He said, "I think once I get this torn down I'm moving out of this &*@#$ area and I vow to never live in a neighborhood with an HOA again." OK, I think I have a listing coming up with NO RV parking if anyone is looking for that.
But, remember, check with your HOA and the building department in your city before doing any additions or remodeling to your home or it could cost you the cost of building, and then even more to tear it down again.