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Selling in Coquitlam or Port Moody: Why city permits for renovations are important when selling your home.

Blog by Team Aragon | March 12th, 2015


So you are a Coquitlam or Port Moody resident thinking of doing some renovations to your home to update or improve upon its current condition? Updating your home can add considerable value to your investment as long as it’s done right. Permits add value and peace of mind for your potential purchaser down the road. If work is done without a required permit, it could end up being a liability and you won’t realize the full potential of the work.

Take finishing a basement for example. This is a job that requires a permit from the city because there is often electrical and plumbing involved in finishing a basement. The city wants to know that you have hired qualified trades people to do the work on these components. The future buyer of your home will also rest assured knowing that qualified individuals have completed the work or if you have done the work yourself, that it was done correct and inspected by the city to gain final approval.

If a permit is not obtained for such a job there is also a risk associated with the house insurance. If there was faulty wiring resulting in a fire or a flood due to poor plumbing, your insurance provider could void your insurance. This also applies to anyone who purchases your home. A lack of permits is a big negative when selling your home as it diminishes the value of the improvement.

Another scenario is that you may be required to undo the renovations that you just spent time and money on. The best course of action is to call your city to find out what work requires a permit. Some examples are: rebuilding or adding a deck, adding stairs to a deck, remodelling a kitchen or bathroom where water lines are moved, installing a gas line, putting an addition on to your home.

When you go to sell your home you need to fill out a Property Disclosure Statement where you report on the condition of your home. You are also to disclose on this form if you have done any work without a permit. The potential buyer of your home will then ask for a copy of the Disclosure Statement as part of the conditions of the contract. They may also go to the city and ask if any permits have been issued for the home. 

Always remember that before any home renovation you need to consider whether a permit is necessary. If it is, don't delay and make sure that you get the permit before starting on any of the work. Obtaining renovation permits doesn't just save you the hassle of legal repercussions, it ensures that the work is done in a safe and proper manner. It also helps you make the most of the money you spent. It is also important to save all your receipts and copies of permits so you have them on hand for the buyer when you list your home for sale.