The decision to undertake any sort of home renovation project, while exciting, is also fraught with anxiety. That's because homeowners are not only going to spend a considerable amount of money to improve their domicile, they're also going to have to make a multitude of important decisions and ensure they don't run afoul of any laws.

Indeed, even after they have selected a contractor for the job, they will have to ensure that the outfit secures the necessary building permits, as the failure to do so can have serious repercussions.

At the outset, people here in Miami-Dade County should know that the following types of popular home renovation projects will require their contractor(s) to secure a building permit:

  • Work on the home's electrical, plumbing and/or air conditioning system
  • Installation of a new roof and/or windows
  • Removing interior walls
  • Building a fence and/or carport   

Conversely, other popular home renovation projects like painting the interior walls, floor resurfacing or the installation of ceiling fans in existing outlets don't require a permit.

All of this naturally begs the question then as to why Miami-Dade County -- and every other county in the Sunshine State -- requires building permits at all.

While the most obvious answer is perhaps to say "it's the law," the better answer is that building permits actually protect homeowners. Indeed, a building permit means that county inspectors will monitor the progress of the work being done, and ensure that it complies not just with the plans submitted for approval, but also with the Florida Building Code and all applicable ordinances.

This provides homeowners with the satisfaction that comes from knowing that they won't have to pay fines or encounter any difficulties should they ever attempt to sell their remodeled home. Perhaps more significantly, it provides them with peace of mind knowing that their dwelling is safe both now and in the years to come.    

If you have encountered difficulties with any aspect of a home renovation project from disagreements over the contract terms to construction defects, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional to learn more about your rights and your options.