Now that spring is officially here and the weather is warming up, residents and contractors are beginning to think about home-improvement projects.
But it’s important to remember that building permits are required within the corporate limits of the City of Columbus and within 2 miles.
Building permits are mandated for all new construction, including additions, enclosing porches and garages; repairs when structural members are involved or which enlarge or change the location of openings; interior remodeling when alterations require removal of walls or wall coverings or adding new rooms such as basement finishing; decks, fences and swimming pools; patio covers and carports; residential accessory building more than 120 square feet; and moving or demolition of structures; as well as small lots unless over an acre.
Permits are required for but are not limited to fencing, plumbing, sprinklers, restoration, remodeling, decks, basement finishes, and any new construction. Anything cosmetic (such as paint, carpet, trimming, roofing and siding) will not need a permit. All things needing permits can be found on our city website under the building department.
Residents tend to think applying for a permit requires traveling to City Hall to fill out the paperwork; however, that isn’t the case anymore. The process can be done entirely online. To apply for a permit online, visit the City’s website, columbusne.us. Then hover over ‘Departments’ and under ‘Community Development,’ select ‘Permits and Inspections,’ then click on ‘Online Permitting.’ It’s that easy. Or, just click here.
In order to receive a permit, you must first submit a Building Permit Application (PDF), and fill out the Small Lot NOI (PDF), if applicable.
Of course, people can still also come to City Hall to take care of it.
“We know some may not be tech-savvy or own a computer so the City provides assistance and a computer to apply online with ease,” City Senior Office Associate Vanessa Adame said.
Permits are typically reviewed and issued within five days, though commercial projects vary depending on their size and complexity. City officials encourage the public to apply for the necessary permits during the planning stage of their work.
Please remember, before any work is concealed you must set up an inspection and receive approval from the City for the following:
- Footings – when formed and ready to pour
- Foundations – before pouring and when waterproofing is complete and ready for backfilling
- Under the Floor Rough-In
- Framing – when all framing, wiring, plumbing, and venting are done and walls are ready for covering
- Final – project is completed and ready for occupancy
- Plumbing – open rough-in and final; same for gas
There are also requirements for work that is electrical, plumbing, or occupy the Right of Way.
For additional information on Building Permit Fees and City Code requirements, contact the Community Development Department at 402-562-4236.
“Always give the building department a call when unsure or have any questions,” Adame said.
Click here to be take directly to the department's page.
(ABOUT THE PHOTO): City of Columbus Senior Office Associate Vanessa Adame, standing, helps a resident use the Online Permit System on the City's website during a recent morning at City Hall. People can apply for permits online from their home or choose to come into City Hall.)