Construction data can tell you a lot about what’s happening and where—in new construction as well as renovations. For companies with related products as well as the contractors who get the job done, data derived from building permits provides a valuable perspective on the current status quo of construction and other associated work performed in a specific geographical area. It also provides a heads-up to upcoming trends on the horizon. Because the accuracy of construction data in building permits is enforced by local regulations and confirmed by inspection, it’s an authoritative source for reliable information.
Industries that can benefit from organized access to building permit data include:
All new construction draws permits, but certain renovations and re-builds also must meet this requirement. Any work that demolishes a load-bearing wall in a house, for example, will be reported in a building permit. Likewise, any new addition to a house that expands or otherwise alters its existing envelope will be reported. Garage conversions are another typical permitted project.
Major permitted work includes installing new wiring or adding additional circuits to an existing system.
Doors And Windows
Exterior doors as well as replacement windows that require any alterations to the existing opening draw a permit.
Projects that include upgrading to a new furnace or central air conditioner, as well as installing ductwork, will be found in permit data.
Permits record information on major plumbing work, including pipes, fixtures, sewer lines, water heaters, water softeners, etc. Many DIY plumbing projects are also included in the permit requirement of most counties—often to the surprise of the homeowner.
Permit requirements vary by locale. In general, roofing material replacement—not including simple patching— requires a permit. Replacement or repair of the underlying structure of the roof, or any work that alters the roofline, almost always gets a permit.
Chimney and Fireplace
Because of obvious safety issues, a permit is required for any alterations or other work on these structures. Exception: chimney cleaning.
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