Why Hire an Architect to Navigate the Permit Process?

Why Hire an Architect for Permitting

If you are renovating an existing space for your business or building an entirely new building, you will inevitably need to obtain a commercial building permit prior to construction commencement. The permit is issued by the township, city, or county building department, depending on which local government entity has jurisdiction over your property. Typically, all commercial construction projects will need to obtain a building permit to ensure that businesses and property owners keep their customers and employees safe by complying with current building codes. Building codes are developed primarily to protect human life, with local jurisdictions adding their own rules for sustainability or disability access. While these requirements can sometimes feel burdensome to a building owner, building codes save lives during events such as fires, flooding, earthquakes, or other natural disasters.

Navigating the permitting process can be very time consuming and confusing, especially if it’s not something you typically do. Building codes can differ between states and sometimes even between cities in the same state. To make the task even more challenging, each of these entities may require the permits for a given project to be issued in various ways. For example, you may need a building permit and separate trade permits, or you may need to obtain a health department permit before you apply for a building permit. In some instances, you will need to obtain zoning approval before you even begin your project plans. If you ignore commercial building permit requirements, an inexperienced owner could alter their property in a way that makes it a liability and dangerous to the community.

Before acquiring a building permit, property owners and tenants must make many decisions, get construction plans drawn up that observe all laws and codes, and file lots of paperwork. Architects have significant knowledge of the process and the zoning and building codes. They can help navigate through the building permit process saving time and money. Before the construction drawings are even started, an architect begins the permit process with their due diligence in reviewing codes and zoning laws to make sure your property and your plans are in accordance with the local codes and laws. This can save significant time after you have submitted the required paperwork for permitting and the building inspections are performed by officials.

Hiring an architect during the beginning planning stages of your project would be very beneficial. They can help answer questions during the design stages and will make sure that your plans are in accordance with local laws and building codes. An architect can also help in getting building permits approved faster and more efficiently which will save time and money in the long run. If you are considering a building project, contact JL Architects today!

-Amy Estrella