Getting A Steel Building While Waiting On A Permit

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Permits are usually vital for your steel building project. The permitting process is in place to ensure a steel building is designed according to your municipality’s standards with regards to safety and approved zoning plans. Most building projects in major cities including new construction, remodeling and repairs require general building permits.

It’s your responsibility as a buyer and first time builder to acquire the correct and necessary permits, and you should account for the permitting process when you plan your steel building project. This is true with every company throughout the industry. Depending on the time of the year and how quickly your municipality typically processes permits, you could be waiting a weeks or months for a permit. Staying on schedule is essential to getting through your steel building project with the least amount of stress as possible, and a lengthy permit process could (but shouldn’t) derail your timeline. Now, there is a good chance your permitting office is able to get you a permit quickly. Still, I want you to be prepared, and have a list of other attainable goals to keep you on schedule, should you face a prolonged permit process from your county or municipality.

What else can you accomplish while you wait for your permits? Well, for starters, you can figure out what your doing with your land. Do you need to bulldoze? Level out some land? Maybe there’s a few trees in the way of where you want to build? Take this time to go over your site planning and make property modifications if necessary. Your site also needs to be accessible for the delivery truck, so make correct accommodations, or make your property reachable. 

While you’re waiting on permits, it would be a good time to find an experienced independent concrete engineer and have them lay the foundation for your steel building. Remember: Do not pour your foundation early! Also be sure you’re following the actual final engineering plans and not any preliminary plans! Foundations aren’t all the same and like your building, they’ll be customized to your exact specifications. This is where your independent concrete engineer comes into play. They know all about your soil conditions, frost lines information and area specifications to make sure your foundation is installed correctly. If you try to erect a building on an insufficient foundation, your building could have severe problems down the road.

If you’re expanding onto a current building, you may need to make plans for your interior build out. These plans could be as simple as moving all of the office equipment out of the way to establishing a floorplan. Whatever steps are necessary for your interior build out, now is the time! Generally, if an architect is needed for any interior work, have them design around the steel building design rather than have the steel building supplier design around architectural plans. Some architects aren’t familiar with the engineering or design criteria of specific steel building suppliers.

While you wait on your permit, you can always work with your project manager and continue to pick out add-ons and accessories and customize your building to your exact specifications. When you purchase from a manufacturer, you’re in control of what accessories you want to include on your steel building. If you purchase from a broker, you may not get to choose what accessories are a part of your “all included package.” It’s important to take care of the design aspects with your project manager as soon as possible because you want to stay within the 90-day price lock window. Manufacturers like Armstrong Steel can lock in the current low price of steel for your steel building project once you make an engineering payment, which goes toward the overall cost of your building. This is beneficial to a steel building buyer because steel prices, like oil prices, are volatile and are expected to rise in the next few years. Locking in your steel price gives you the freedom to take care of all of the steps included in your steel building project without the worry of your final price ballooning unexpectedly because steel prices jumped as well. 

All that’s left is to release your building for fabrication, and prepare for delivery. There’s plenty you can accomplish in every stage of your steel building project to ensure you stay on schedule! 

What else can you do while waiting on a permit? Help our readers by commenting below! Plus, check out more helpful tips in the Future First Time Builders section!

Photo courtesy: Pete

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