By Helen Callier
October 8th, 2020
We have all heard the stories of those crazy people with a dream of owning their own business. Be the boss and bake their own pie to enjoy all the slices they choose is often touted to family and friends within an ear shot. Some budding entrepreneurs pull their life savings to start up, others ask family members, and some take the great risk of taking out a bank loan. From bakeries to auto repair shops to banquet halls and on and on, the coins are tossed in the pond for making wishes come true.
This was such the case when our toll-free line rang late on a Friday evening with a gentleman on the other end of the line began telling his story. He was so sure of his success with his new venture, he quit his job months ago to walk the path of his dream. The caller went on to say that he had leased what he thought was the perfect spot, negotiated a great lease, and could see customers lining up to by his tasty fajitas and other hand-made traditional Mexican foods.
Then the unexpected happened. After 6 months, still no permit, savings significantly dwindled, and had started paying rent on an empty space and on new kitchen equipment. With voice cracking, the caller said he needed help with his permit. He had received multiple rejection comments from the jurisdiction, and he was not sure what to do next, especially since his Architect had stopped responding to his calls on status.
After asking a few questions, taking the time to check the rejection comments and briefly reviewing plans, it appeared that the Architect had not submitted a plan set with the details required for the kitchen including plumbing involving grease trap. Basically, a life-long dream was losing its appeal due to misses in design in the beginning and little or no communication between Architect and Restaurant Owner regarding status of permit. To place the Caller back on the road, we provided 5 key tips to get on the right path to obtaining a building permit after months of delay to the Owner in order to use as a checklist with his Architect until permit is granted.
- Review plans with selected Architect
- Go through rejection comments one-by-one and address each comment from jurisdiction
- Ask if any issues in meeting building codes as outlined in jurisdiction’s comments
- Obtain timing for making corrections to plans and if any added fees from jurisdiction to resubmit
- Refrain from assuming and ask Architect if all rejection comments have been responded to and timing to resubmit to jurisdiction
In addition, we encouraged the Restaurant Owner to make sure his GC is registered with jurisdiction to avoid any further delays in picking up permit when plans are approved.
There are approximately 30 million small businesses in the US and the majority of those starting up fall by the wayside for various reasons. In the case with our late Friday evening caller, failing to perform due diligence in the beginning on how long it would take to obtain a building permit and the Architect lack of knowledge on the specific jurisdiction’s requirements caused unexpected delays and a major burn in Owner’s operational money i.e. life savings. If you know of someone in this scenario, consider sharing the above 5 tips to hep them right the ship and get sailing toward living their dream. Call us at 1.844.PERMIT.4 if you have a great permitting story to share or connect with me on Linkein.