The city speaks: When do I need a permit
Part one of a three-part series on city of Marshfield permits
Marshfield Building Services Supervisor
The city of Marshfield requires a permit for everything, or so it seems, as many people think. This is true to a degree, which definitely irritates some. Why do many municipalities require permits? These kinds of requirements evolved from early unchecked urban sprawl.
Think about what would happen in your own neighborhood if everyone could do anything they want as far as construction goes. How close to your nice house do you want your neighbor’s junky looking shack? How saleable will your property be with your neighbor possessing a 10-foot tall chain link fence, topped with three rows of barbed wire that straddles your property line?
This may sound extreme, but somehow rules were needed to restrict various forms of development. These rules were made and changed by the public over many decades. The majority rules, as they say.
Requiring permits allows the city to review what people are planning and see that the proposed action fits what is allowed and also what makes sense. Your idea of what you want may not be allowed, but some form of it might be if it is tweaked. That is where city staff comes in to play. When you are ready to do something, bringing the necessary information helps speed up the process. Even before the point when you are ready to build, you should have already asked and gotten the answers to most of the questions that you needed.
The required permit list seems endless, but I will try to cover most of it here:
—A building permit is required for all new buildings, additions, decks, alterations to existing buildings, and multifamily or commercial roof replacements. Building plans showing construction details for these items, other than roof replacements or shingling, are required.
—For existing buildings: Painting, floor coverings, interior decorating, and reshingling residential roofs do not require a permit. If you resheet a roof deck or reconstruct any wood framing of a residential roof, a permit is required. New cabinetry, drywall, trim, and interior doors require a permit as do new soffit, fascia, windows, and exterior doors if the costs for materials and labor exceeds $1,000.
—Plumbing permits are required for moving or adding fixtures.
—Heating, ventilating, and air conditioning permits are required for installing or replacing furnaces, wood burners, fireplaces, and central air conditioners.
—Electrical permits are needed for new/upgrading services, new wiring, and rewiring.
Please call our office for questions or inspections at 715-387-1344. If the administrative assistant cannot answer your question, you will be directed to the person who can. Inspections and appointments are also scheduled by the administrative assistant.
If you have questions regarding permits, please contact building services at 715-486-2016 or via the city’s website, ci.marshfield.wi.us. Our permit applications and other related forms are found online at ci.marshfield.wi.us/residents/permits/index.php.