Renovations, Remodeling, and Repairs
Home Home Improvement Renovations, Remodeling, and Repairs: Which Requires a Permit?

Renovations, Remodeling, and Repairs: Which Requires a Permit?

by Eric

Are home renovations the same as remodeling?

Home renovations are often thought of and referred to as making significant changes to your home, which is true to an extent. It is often confused with “remodeling”, which includes home changes that many people refer to as “renovations”. Home remodeling projects require a structural change to your home, meaning tearing down walls, reconfiguring a kitchen or bathroom, and even adding on an extra room.

Unlike renovations, remodels may also require a building permit. Almost every time the structure of a building is changed, it requires a legal document that makes sure that all building codes are followed so that the building is safe for dwelling.


These are some of the things that you can do to your home that don’t require changing the structure of your home, and therefore they don’t require a permit. An exception would be updating a roof; it doesn’t change the structure of a home, but incorrect installation can cause structural damage, resulting in the need for a permit.

Paint Jobs and Wallpapering:

Painting walls may seem like one of the most basic ways to update your home decor, but painting can be used to add dimension to walls and rooms. Consider an accent wall, which is when one wall of a room is painted a different color from the other walls. This color should stand out and is usually the “feature wall” of a room. Wallpaper has come a long way from what it was in the last few decades. Removable wallpaper is not only easy to install and remove, but it can also come in many different designs to add a new feel to your home.


Flooring can also give a new look to your home. Most older homes were built with some type of carpet in them, and many people are moving to hardwood or laminate flooring. Some people even choose tile flooring for every room in their home. All of these types of flooring are pretty simple to do on your own. Carpet flooring can also be done on your own, but it’s a little more tricky to size and install carpet without a professional.

Kitchen and Bathroom Renovations:

An easy way to update your kitchen is to install new countertops. You can also update your cabinetry and install new hardware. The same things can be done in a bathroom.


All of these types of changes to your home may require a permit, depending on where you live. These projects also require more skills and knowledge, so they are best left to a professional. If you’re interested in doing any of these projects, you’ll definitely need a permit, but it’s also good to have a good understanding and education in construction-related tasks because it will more than likely require licensing.

Expanding and Adding Rooms:

Expanding and adding rooms require major structural changes to a home. Many things need to be taken into consideration, such as plumbing pipes and electrical wiring. You should also never attempt to tear down a wall if you’re not sure if it’s a load-bearing wall.

Structural Changes Within a Room:

Not all remodels involve tearing down walls or adding on additional structures. For example, if you want to add an island to your kitchen, complete with a sink and dishwasher or a stove, then this would be considered a remodel. The same goes if you want your bathroom completely rearranged. If you want to change the positions of your sink, shower, and toilet, then you are wanting to remodel.


Home repairs refer to fixing any part of your home that may not be functioning properly. This can include a roof, the foundation, HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning) system, and water heaters. These types of home repairs should be done by a professional as well, though there are some home repairs that don’t require a professional.

If you like to DIY, there are many changes you can make to your home yourself, and you don’t need a permit to do so. But if you’re looking to make some remodeling changes to your home, it’s good to get a permit and license, but until you do that, it’s best to consult a professional.

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