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I live in the county where there are no restrictions. I don't need a permit for my metal building or my shed. Are you 100% sure? You better be or it could cost you a lot of green.....and I don't mean frogs!

Just because you live outside the city limits, it doesn't automatically classify you in a 'no permit' classification for an "accessory building" (as most of the zoning boards refer to them.) And it may not be an actual permit you are required to have, BUT you need to be knowledgeable about the property codes in the area where you are wanting to build a structure. Often the property deed will state what restrictions you must adhere to and many of them are lenient.

If you're in an HOA or POA, the guidelines for having an outside building may go beyond what the city or county has in place. It would be very wise to review the HOA or POA rules BEFORE you purchase a home or property in one of these areas. I cannot tell you how many customers I've worked with over the years who thought it was no big deal to come in and buy a portable shed only to find out that their housing authority has to approve things such as the color of the building, the materials it's built with, and what type of foundation it must have, just to name a few.

Most of the city codes (and other municipalities) have their building codes posted on the web to make it easier for residents to know what can and cannot be put on property in that jurisdiction. They usually have a detailed explanation of what is classified as an "accessory structure (or building)" and they give the setbacks, if there are any, from the front, back and/or the side lines of the property and the distance the structure must be from the home. If there will be any electrical or plumbing in the building, that is typically detailed separately and it's worth noting those are often separate permits.

If you choose National Metal Buildings and decide to work with me, I'm going to ask you to confirm with "the permit people" (general term for anyone that has the authority to give you the thumbs up or down on what you're wanting), that you either do or don't have to have a permit. It will save you from having a big headache and keep you from having to pay for something you cannot have. Did you hear that last part? That's part of the green I was referring to at the beginning of this post. If you order a building and sign a contract, you are, by law, obligated to pay for that structure. If the crews shows up to build and a building inspector shows up and stops the entire process (and believe me, it's the highlight of their day!), you're still obligated to pay for that building. You may also (and it's a pretty good chance that you will) incur FEES (sometimes daily!) until you get the appropriate permit or approval. That may sound crazy, but somewhere in all those hundreds of pages of docs you signed when you bought the place, you signed something that said you agreed to abide by their rules. I'm no different than you and guess what happened to me? Yep, I've gotten bitten by those little inspectors on golf carts myself! And it was nobody's fault except mine. Ugh, I hate even saying that, but it's true.

Just do your homework and make the calls and find out what's required. You may find it's simpler than what you may anticipate. I will always try to help my customers with this if it gets confusing or if they don't know what to ask. In most cases I will have given you a detailed sketch and information on the building you're wanting that you can provide to the City, HOA, or other authority in order to get the approval needed. Don't overthink it; just do it and check it off your list!

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