Denver is the first city in Colorado to offer free building permits for common home-improvement projects to single-family homes and duplexes. The free permits will be available June 1-15 and valid for 180 days. Permits will be issued on the spot to citizens or their contractors.
“Now is a great time for Denver property owners to take advantage of construction deals to complete home improvement projects they may be putting off,” Mayor John Hickenlooper said. “Issuing free permits is one way the City can help make these types of projects easier to complete.”
The Home Renovation Bonanza covers the following improvements to existing single-family homes and duplexes:
●Basic interior remodel (existing kitchen, bath or bedroom)
●Roof covering repair or replacement
●Replacement of water heaters
●Change out central heating and air
●Photo voltaic systems (Solar Panels)
●Stucco or siding home exteriors
The Home Renovation Bonanza excludes complex projects that require detailed plan review such as new homes, additions, garages and new structures such as a gazebo. Projects requiring plan review for engineering and structural modifications are also excluded.
The free building permits can be obtained between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, at the permit counter on the second floor of the Webb Municipal Building, 201 W. Colfax Ave.
Building permit fees range from $20 to several thousand dollars, depending on the value of the project. The building permit fee is $20 for projects valued up to $500; the fee is $35 for projects valued between $500 and $2,000; and then the fee increases by $8 for each additional $1,000 of project value over $2,000.
Building permits offer important protections to homeowners. First, they require that inspections be performed to verify work was done correctly and follows building code standards. Permits also protect the resale of homes. For example, a sale may be held up because an improvement such as a basement remodel wasn’t done with the proper permits.
Frequently Asked Questions:
1. If a re-roof permit requires engineering and structural modification because of the added weight of the new roofing material, are the plan review and permit fees waived? No. If the residential project requires plans to be logged in with CPD for code review then the permit fee is not waived.
2. What if I submit plans for a remodeling project that includes improving a room or adding an addition? Any project that includes work not specifically included in this program (such as additions) will not be subject to waived permit fees.
3. If I have completed a home improvement project without a permit, can I get one now for free? No. This program is for new, fully reviewed and code compliant projects only.
4. If I am issued a permit, but I don’t complete the work within 180 days, can I still complete the work, or extend the free permit? No. Once the permit expires, the applicant will be required to re-apply and pay for all inspections and permit fees.
5. What type of plans or drawings do I need to apply for the permit? For projects covered by the Bonanza, you must provide a hand-written floor plan indicating the existing location of walls, windows and doorways, and a hand written floor plan indicating the work to be performed.
6. Can I submit incomplete plans for review during the Bonanza to qualify for a free permit? No. If the plans are incomplete, staff will not issue a permit. You must compile complete project plans and they must be accepted for review and issuance of permit before June 15 to qualify.
7. Are there any other fees waived during the Bonanza such as zoning, Denver Fire Department or public works fees? No. This program applies to building permits only.
8. If a project requires Landmark review and approval before the issuance of a construction permit, are the construction permit fees still waived? Yes, however Landmark approval and review fees apply. As a result, construction permits may not be available the day of application, pending Landmark approval. Landmark must approve and construction permits issued before June 15 to qualify for the free permit.
Editor’s note: For more information, call Denver 3-1-1 or visit www.denvergov.com/building.