Wondering if you need a permit to conduct a foundation repair in Houston? We have all the answers! Regional Foundation Repair is at your service 24/7. In this guide, we cover common faq questions like:
- Is A Permit Necessary For Foundation Repair In Houston?
- How Much Does A Foundation Repair Permit Cost In Houston?
- How Do You Obtain A Permit For Foundation Repair In Houston?
And much more!
Your foundation is very important and it is essential to properly treat any foundation problems that appear. Keep reading and learn more about foundation repair permits in the Houston area.
Is A Permit Necessary For Foundation Repair In Houston?
You have probably decided to do a foundation repair to your house and are now wondering what next. The first step is researching permitting issues to avoid getting in trouble with the authorities. It is important to follow city rules and regulations to save money and time that could be spent in jail and paying fines.
Our foundation repair experts in Houston have a firm knowledge of Houston’s code of enforcement in construction works. You can always call us at Regional Foundation Repair for advice on matters involving permits and city construction laws.
According to a Code Word publication by the City of Houston Public Works Department, it is a requirement to have a permit before undertaking a foundation repair job.
The clause states explicitly, “No person, firm or corporation shall erect, construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, improve, remove, convert, or demolish any building or structure in the city, or cause the same to be done, without first obtaining a separate building permit for each such building or structure from the Building Official.”
How Much Does A Foundation Repair Permit Cost In Houston?
Foundation permits are complicated to price since it all depends on the size of the project and how much repair is being done. However, most permits in Houston, Texas, cost between $50 to $200 for minor repairs in homes and between $100 to $2500 for large-scale building projects.
The more square feet the home has, the more expensive the permit becomes. Basement remodels tend to have permit fees that are expensive since key aspects like electrical, plumbing, and drainage will be affected.
The cost of a city permit for basic foundation repair services is comparatively less expensive.
How Do You Obtain A Permit For Foundation Repair In Houston?
Although the processes and requirements of obtaining a permit get reviewed frequently, some items remain standard.
To get a permit, you must follow the following steps:
Step 1: Submit the documents.
The contractor is supposed to get a repair plan drawn up and stamped by a verified engineer. The stamped plan should then be submitted to the Houston Permitting Center offices.
For residential repair permits, you are not required to submit a plan. However, The City of Houston requires you to submit a building permit application form and a residential Repair Spec List. More information on plan submittal can be found on the official houstontx.gov
Step 2: Site Plan
The law demands that a foundation plan must be conducted whenever a foundation repair is proposed. Once the City officials approve the plan, they then award a permit to the contractor. The contractor is then supposed to call 811 a few days before commencing with the project.
A utility company is sent to the site location to mark phone cables, electrical wires, and gas pipes before the contractor does the repairs. The site plan is vital as it ensures the construction does not damage property lines and other essential structures that are adjacent to the place being repaired.
Step 3: Floodplain Management Office (FMO) Review
The Houston Permitting Center released a document to help in clarifying various conditions and requirements for foundation repair works.
All foundation repairs that occur in the 100-year floodplain, floodway, or conveyance zone must get a plan review by the FMO regardless of the size of the project. The review allows them to vet your site before awarding an elevation certificate.
There are other conditions and restrictions for foundation repair projects in the document. Foundation piles are not allowed to go over any property lines, and all repairs along common walls of apartments require a letter confirming that the property managers of the affected houses are aware of the repairs about to be done.
The process takes two weeks for residential properties and up to one month for commercial properties. Permits for minor foundation repairs may be awarded the same day.
Which Types of Repairs Do Not Require a Permit?
It is always advisable to contact the permit offices in the City of Houston before undertaking any repair project. Their main office is located at 1002 Washington Ave, and their phone number is 832-394-9000.
There are a few repair projects that are exempted from having to attain a building permit. These projects include:
- Replacing wooden or metal fences that are less than 8 feet in height.
- Indoor minor repairs like painting, tiling, or carpeting.
- Finish work like changing countertops or fixing cabinets.
- Replacing kitchen or bathroom faucets.
- Repairing damaged drywall or roofing as long as it is not part of a shared condo.
Residential additions and remodeling jobs require single-family residential permits that may be obtained through the One-Stop Section. Such jobs include:
- Additions to a residence or building a new home
- Remodels/Repairs to a residence
- Garages and Structures for residences
- Fences over eight feet high
- Driveways and Sidewalks
- Residential Swimming Pools
To begin the process of obtaining a residential development permit through the One-Stop Section, it is advisable to visit the offices located at 1002 Washington Ave., 3rd floor.
These steps should then be followed:
- Complete the Building Permit Application and the applicable Declaration in Support of Building Permit Application (Individual or Corporate)
- Once you fill worksheet documents, a Customer Service Representative in the Permits Section will issue a project number.
- If applicable, visit the Planning and Taps and Meters Sections for the appropriate approvals
When getting a contractor to do a repair job, it is crucial to ensure they are registered with the City of Houston and licensed by the State of Texas. Houston building code laws are stringent, and offenders are penalized heavily.
The following projects need a permit to be completed in Houston:
- New construction of commercial buildings or structures
- Alterations, repairs, or additions to existing buildings or structures
- Changes in the use or occupancy of an existing building or structure
- Interior tenant lease build-outs, remodeling, and repairs
- Exterior remodels, alterations or repairs
- Moving/relocating existing buildings
- Demolition (interior and complete facilities)
- Fences over 8′ high or fences constructed of concrete or masonry
- Driveways and sidewalks
- Parking lot paving and repairs
Do You Need an Engineer’s Report To Get A Permit?
When submitting the drawing plan of the structure to be repaired, it is a requirement that a professional Engineer stamps it to approve that the plan is up to standard.
It is not compulsory to have an engineer’s report to get a permit. However, it is advisable to get your house inspected by a professional engineer before proceeding to get a contractor to do repairs. An engineer is licensed and experienced with foundation repair techniques that are suitable for your house.
When Do You Need A Floodplain Management Office (FMO) Review?
The Floodplain Management Office has the authority of giving permits to all construction projects that fall within the Special Flood Hazard Area in the City of Houston. This office works in accordance with the City’s floodplain regulations that were set by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
You need an FMO review when:
- You have a construction project in the 500-year and 100-year floodplain and floodway.
- You need an inspection for your construction project that is in a floodplain area.
- You want to do a platting project for your drainage.
How Can A Foundation Repair Contractor Help?
You have probably considered doing home repairs yourself. Please don’t do it. Although patching cracks in drywall and painting over chipped wall sections may improve the cosmetic appearance of your house, your foundation underneath may be getting more damaged.
Foundation problems require an expert with experience to find and solve from the root cause.
We at Regional Foundation Repair have the latest knowledge on foundation problem repair and will ensure your home’s foundation is in the best shape possible.
Regional Foundation Repair also offers a professional evaluation that involves inspecting your property and creating a solution plan based on your property’s foundation problems. We have all permits and licenses to operate within Houston. What are you waiting for? Contact us and let us take care of your building’s foundation!