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April 30, 2012

Chandler relaxes permit requirements for minor jobs

Minor home improvement projects such as replacing a water heater or air conditioning unit will no longer require building permits and inspection by the City. 

The Chandler City Council on Thursday voted to expand the types of construction exempted from building permit requirements. In addition to water heaters and air conditioners, other exempted activities include replacement of furnaces, pool or spa heating equipment, evaporative coolers, water treatment systems, circuit breakers and roof coverings where the replacement roof does not increase the load imposed upon the structural frame.

The exemption from a permit and subsequent inspection by a City building inspector only applies to single family and townhouse residences and only if the new equipment is of equal or lesser capacity than the previous equipment. 

 “This was an opportunity to streamline our permitting and inspection requirements and concentrate our efforts on the construction activities having the greatest impact on safety.” said Dave Nakagawara, the City’s Building Official.

Initial installations of new equipment (non-replacements) or upsizing or upgrading of equipment or extensions of existing systems will still require permits.  
“For example, if you were to add a new electrical circuit or install a larger air conditioning unit, then you would be required to obtain a permit,” Nakagawara said. “And although you may not be required to get a permit for certain minor projects, you are still responsible for following applicable building codes.”

A Homeowner Building Permit Manual with helpful instructions, plans and details that can aid residents with a number of home renovation projects is available online at http://udm.chandleraz.gov/document.php?id=1225.  The 50-page manual includes information on room additions, accessory buildings, carport conversions, patio coverings, pools, fences, and even how to install yard irrigation systems.

For more information, contact Chandler’s Transportation & Development Department at 215 E. Buffalo Street, 480-782-3000.