Before you begin on the renovations in your home, it is essential that you have the right building and city permissions for the construction. This approval process often catches homeowners off-guard because they don’t understand the process that is required to get the approvals that are needed before the project can start. Here are a few things to know about renovation project permits and approval:
Building Owners Association Approvals:
Most residents will need to first talk to the building owner’s association for review and approval. This step is not necessary if you live in some of the small brownstone buildings or a private house. The approval is usually handled by the management company for the building. Full documentation will need to be presented outlining the renovation plans and details.
Usually, it takes approximately 2 weeks to get the approval that is needed. The best way to speed up the process is to ask for the documentation that will be required so that everything can be submitted at once. This documentation might include:
Scope of work for the project
- Drawings that detail the existing conditions and the proposed changes
- Contractor’s insurance information
- License details for the contractor
- Processing fees for the review board
Usually, this information is submitted to the management company, and then the information packet is passed on to the approval board. In some cases, the board will review the information and provide feedback by email. But, there are some building owner’s associations that require the presentation of the information at the monthly meeting. If it is a complex renovation that involves bathrooms, kitchens, moving walls, or combining apartments, then the building’s architect will likely need to review the plans.
Things that Might Delay Construction Approval:
There are times when the approval might be delayed. Common reasons for the delay could include:
- Workload of the reviewing architect
- Requested clarifications to the plan
- Necessary changes to the design to meet building requirements
- Filing permits with the NYC Department of Buildings
If you need to obtain permits from the city, then the approval won’t be finalized until you have those permits in hand.
In multi-family buildings, scope changes might include requests to waterproof the floors in the kitchen or bathroom, soundproof the apartment, replace plumbing lines, or make other adjustments based on the structural needs of the building.
Filings with the NYC Department of Buildings:
Filings with the NYC Department of Buildings vary depending on the scope of the project. These filings might include:
- Electrical Permit: Usually issued the same day the application is filed.
- Plumbing Permit: Takes 4 to 8 weeks unless the Express LAA Application is used for a same-day approval (this express application is not available for projects with gas piping involved).
- Full Permit: Usually the permit that takes the longest time and is required if walls are removed or added or dropped ceilings are in the scope of work.
- OP-128 Form: This form needs to be submitted to the DOB by the end of the month detailing the basic plumbing renovations that were completed which didn’t need a permit. Examples include installing a new dishwasher or changing plumbing fixtures.
Permit and Filing Support from DCON Renovations:
Here at DCON Renovations, we are experienced in the NYC remodeling industry. We understand the steps that are needed to obtain the right permits for every project. Each situation is unique, so we can guide the project to ensure that everything is handled before construction begins.
It is important to understand that some things are out of our hands and unpredictable in the construction industry. For example, the DOB might approve the plans for the renovation, but changes could be requested by the building owner’s association. Just because something can legally be completed in the city, doesn’t mean that the plans match the requirements for the building.
So, the timing for approvals on the project depends on the building where you are located as well as the extent of proposed renovations. If the permits are delayed, it is important to understand that the project completion can be delayed as well. We work hard to keep things moving along to reduce potential delays as much as possible. In addition to the permits and applications, we use a seven-step process to speed up the process and maximize the results of the project.
Many things need to be considered for a renovation project in New York City, and it is essential that you are working with an experienced and reliable contractor. For more information, reach out to our team here at DCON Renovations: (718) 628-3428