Have you decided to put your house on the market, only to realize that you have done unpermitted work to the home? Believe it or not, this is something that many people have dealt with and will continue to deal with. There are many laws and regulations between different states and cities which makes it hard to keep up. However, there are ways to figure out your next steps as you sell your home. We have everything that you need to know about selling your house with unpermitted work down below.
Understanding Property Work Permits
In the state of Massachusetts, there are property work permits that need to be filled before doing any work to a building or house. The only way around a property work permit for a home is if you are doing regular maintenance that does not involve changing anything with the structure, plumbing, air conditioning, electricity, or visible parts of a home such as fencing, wall building, etc. Property work permits are put in place to ensure that the renovations being done to the house are up to code, as they may require fire code permits as well. It is also important to note that you may have to obtain different work permits for certain types of work, such as air conditioning, decks, door installation, and others, which are listed on the Mass.gov site.
Another reason why property work permits are required is because of the inspection process when selling a home. One of the first things that a potential buyer will want before finalizing the sale of a home is a home inspection to make sure everything is up to date. If there has been work done to a house and a property work permit was used, then the inspection should go well. However, if there was not a property work permit used, then some parts of the home may not pass inspection and it could cost the homeowner or the potential buyer more money to fix what did not pass.
Obtaining a Property Building Permit
If you find out that the work you want done to your house requires property work permits here is what you need to do. First, you have to apply for a property work permit either online or in person. Some permit applications can be started online and then finished in person, others can be started and finished online. Then you have to figure out which type of permit you need.
The first type of permit is a short-form permit, which is used when there are minor changes being done to a property that will not change its use or exits, fire protection, or living area of the existing space.
The second type of permit is a long-form permit, which is used when there are new construction, structural repairs or renovations, changes to use or occupancy, increases in occupancy, creating an additional dwelling unit, or installing fire suppression systems or fire alarms.
Once you apply for whichever permit you need then you have to decide if you or a contractor are doing the work. If a contractor is doing the work then they have to be approved via a signed contract with every party’s signature and they must be a registered Home Improvement Contractor (HIC).
I Want to Sell My Home With Unpermitted Work… What Does That Mean For Me?
First things first, can you sell your house with unpermitted work done? Yes, you can. However, you can get into legal trouble if you knowingly sell your home with unpermitted work done. Massachusetts is a “Buyer Beware” state which means that you are required to disclose any knowledge about lead paint or a septic tank existing in the home, but other than that there is nothing else that a seller is required to share. This means that a seller with unpermitted work needs to choose carefully how they wish to proceed with selling a home.
Some tips are to go through the work that was not permitted and hire someone to fix everything for you. This requires getting a work permit, which is mentioned previously. This option means that the seller will have to hand over money that they may not have yet, or it may require time that the seller does not have either.
Another option is to sell the home as-is. This means that the buyer of the home understands that the condition of the home may not be up-to-date and may include unpermitted work done.
Here at Pavel Buys Houses we can do just that for you. We have a team of professionals in the state of Massachusetts that buy homes for cash, as-is. This option may be the best for a seller with unpermitted work in their home as there are no costs and it can be sold on your timeline.
Want to Sell Your House? We Have You Covered
Even with unpermitted work done, we are here to lift that burden off your shoulders and buy your house. You can easily contact us via phone or e-mail to get an offer for your home with no need for repairs, cleanouts, or realtor fees. We understand that the home selling process can be difficult, so we want to make this process as easy as possible for you.