When starting a remodeling project, contractors and homeowners must determine if a building permit is needed for each step. According to the state of Florida, the law requires that contractors and owners attain a building permit for any structure that is being constructed or altered. Thus, a permit is mandatory if the property owner plans to construct, enlarge, repair, move, demolish, or change the occupancy or structure.
Safety, standards, and building codes are why homeowners must obtain permits for building and remodeling in Florida.
Assembling Plans for a Building Permit
When applying for a building permit in Naples, it is always helpful to have your plans properly assembled before submitting for the permit. Almost all local municipalities in Southwest Florida are electronic submittals only. The City of Bonita Springs is the only “paper” submittal still.
Instructions on how your plans should be assembled are as follows:
The City of Naples
- Always have two sets of plans. Make sure you have both sets.
- Documents that require a professional seal and signature must be digitally signed in accordance with professional requirements. Click Here for City of Naples Digital Signature Requirement
- Each required document must be submitted as a single file.
- Applications are still required to be filled out and submitted. Blank application forms for submittal can be found on the City of Naples website. (please click the hyperlinks below)
- Approved documents will still be stamped by the City of Naples. The stamp will be applied to the lower right corner of documents. Keeping this area free for them to stamp is appreciated.
- Documents that require a professional seal and signature must be digitally signed in accordance with professional requirements. The signer must provide a digital certificate to GMD for use in validating documents submitted electronically.
- Each required document must be submitted as a single file. For example, a 15-page construction plan would be saved as one ConstructionPlan.pdf file. It would then be digitally signed once for the complete document, not signed on each page. Fifteen pages saved and submitted as individual pdf’s would be rejected.
- Even though users will enter some of the information found on our applications as part of the E-Permitting process, application forms still need to be filled out and submitted. We know it seems repetitive, but to add input fields for all the information we collect on all our application types would make the Portal screens very difficult to navigate
- Approved documents will still be stamped by GMD. The stamp will be applied to the upper right corner of documents. Keeping this area free for them to stamp is appreciated.
Safety, Standards & Insurance
Florida and all U.S. states operate under a system of informing counties and cities about approaching construction projects. Each state develops a set of rules governing when a permit is necessary, depending on the size and degree of the development. The permit filed notifies the local or state government and acts as a monitoring tool.
This tool is put into place to ensure standards and regulations are being followed for the safety of citizens. According to Sweeney Law, local and state agencies use this opportunity to investigate the construction to protect people from repairs, additions, or new construction violating building codes. They could present as harmful to life and property. A permit can be obtained for residential or commercial construction projects. In Florida, failure to obtain a building permit where one is required is a violation of the law which could result in a penalty.
To ensure a construction site, you will also need permits to prove and provide coverage to all who visit the site or development daily. A valid permit keeps the insurance valid and prevents issues if an accident were to result from the development.
According to the City of Naples, applications for building permits are required to be submitted for installations regulated by Section 105.1 of the Florida Building Code if any owner or authorized agent intends to:
- Construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, demolish, or change the occupancy of a building or structure
- Erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert, or replace any electrical, gas, mechanical, or plumbing system
Failure to obtain a permit before commencing any project can result in a penalty from your state or county. A penalty delays the construction further than waiting to obtain the proper documentation.
According to Collier County, if you intend to construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, demolish, or change the occupancy of a building or structure or to erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert, or replace any electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system regulated by the Florida Building Code, or cause any such work to be done, you are required to obtain a permit regardless of the cost.
Effective April 19, 2021, you need to be a registered Portal user to upload all forms to satisfy pending conditions through the public portal.
House Bill 1059 goes into effect on Oct.1, 2021, requiring both the applicant and enforcement agency to take specific action within specified time periods related to Single-Family Residential Dwelling and Commercial building permits.
Although a building permit is required for most construction-related work, various real property improvements may not require a building permit. The work exempted must still be constructed in accordance with minimum code standards. Permit exemptions vary between cities, counties, residential, and single-family homes; make sure to double if unsure. Items that do not require a permit:
City of Naples Exemptions
- Air conditioning repair
- Air conditioning window unit replacement with existing electrical
- Carpet installation
- Ceiling fan replacement using existing outlet box and wiring
- Door replacement for any interior or residential door within the individual unit
- Gutters and leaders
- Heating unit repair
- Installation of floor/wall ceramic tile
- Plumbing fixture replacement
- Repair of existing single-family home roof less than two squares (200 square ft)
- Residential appliance replacement
- Residential drywall repairs that are not fire-related and are for small areas that do not exceed two sheets of drywall
- Residential playground equipment
- Single-family home and condominium replacement of existing countertops and sinks that are going back in the exact location (bathroom vanity, kitchen cabinetry replacement in single-family and condominiums does require a permit)
- Window repair
- Installation of drywall in a detached garage without habitable space.
Collier County Exemptions
The following permit exemptions have been established for Collier County based on Section 105. 2. 2 of the Florida Building Code and Section 553. 73( 4)( a), Florida Statutes. Exemptions from permit requirements of this code shall not be deemed to grant authorization for any work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of this code.
Keep in mind, both Collier and the City of Naples are clear about single-family home exemptions but consider a condo a multi-family structure which more times than not requires a permit for even kitchen remodels.
Permits shall not be required for the following:
9. Dustless ventilation isolated systems, that do not affect any fire penetrations or rated assemblies.
3. Plumbing fixture repair or replacement, that does not affect any fire penetrations or rated assemblies.
- Ceiling fixture replacement using existing outlet box and wiring, that does not affect any fire penetrations or rated assemblies.
- Flooring installation.
- Painting/ wallpaper.
- Finish trim work.
- Interior door replacement not affecting existing framed opening.
- Drywall repair/ replacement that are not fire-related and are small areas that do not exceed two sheets of drywall ( 64 sq. ft.).
- Gutters and leaders.
For detailed instructions on the City of Naples and Collier County Permits, visit https://www.naplesgov.com/building/page/permit-information and https://www.colliercountyfl.gov/government/growth-management/divisions/building-plan-review-inspection/building-permits-reports/building-permitting-procedures.
Hire a Contractor – Varian Construction
If you are looking for a contractor to remodel your home and help file the correct permits, trust Varian Construction.
Based in Southwest Florida, Varian Construction has renovated homes, condominiums, and commercial buildings for more than 30 years. In those three-plus decades, Varian has been awarded 15 Florida Home Builders Association awards for excellence in their craft.
Furthermore, owner Bill Varian is accredited as a Certified Graduate Remodeler (CGR), Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS), and a Certified Green Professional (CGP), ensuring that your home will be built with both quality and care.
Fully licensed to work in Florida, Varian Construction can complete your upgrades within your desired budget and timeframe. Varian uses CoConstruct to help schedule timelines, track financials, and as a platform for communication for homeowners so you can be confident that your project is in good hands. If you are interested in hiring Varian Construction for your home renovation, call today at 239.514.0103 or visit VarianConstruction.com.