Frequently Asked Building Questions

I am adding a small patio cover to my house.  Do I need a building Permit?
A.  Yes.  There will be added weight transferred to the exterior wall of the dwelling.  The framing of the structure should be checked for allowable spans for beams, rafters and support posts and beams and support columns which may require concrete footings for frost protection.  There is also the need to verify the design to provide wide stability (lateral loading).
 
I want to construct a small garden shed in my back yard.  Do I need a permit?
A.  We don’t require a building permit as long as the structure is 120 square feet or less.  However, property line setback and the proximity to other structures on the same lot still apply.
 
At what point do I need a foundation for a building on my property?
A.  A structure that is over 400 square feet requires a foundation to frost depth.  Mountain Home’s frost depth is twenty four (24) inches below grade.
 
Do I need a permit if I am remodeling my kitchen, bathroom or other work on the interior of my home?
A. The building code exempts a lot of work in the dwelling as far as painting, floor covering, cabinets, counter tops, wall coverings and the like.  Once the project includes the removal of wall coverings to expose the framing members; a wall or partition whether bearing or non bearing; the relocation of sinks, tubs, showers, water closets and the plumbing for the same, a building permit is required.
 
Are there other permits that might be required even if I don’t need a building permit?
A.  Plumbing permits are required for most bathroom remodels when fixtures are placed.    Electrical permits are required when electrical fixtures are added (such as smoke alarms that are required when a building permit is required.   Mechanical permits are required when vents and ducts are added, replaced or relocated.  This includes dryer vents, range hood vents and extending heating ducts, adding registers and replacing furnaces and air conditioning units.
 
Do I need a building permit for a fence?
A. Yes.
 
Do I need a permit for a concrete patio or wood deck?
A.  A building permit is required when the wooden deck or concrete patio is more than twelve (12) inches above grade or attached to the main structure.
 
Do I need a building permit for a driveway?
A.  We do not require building permits for driveways, as long as you do not remove a sidewalk or driveway approach.
 
Do I need a building permit for stand alone pergolas, gazebos, etc.?  Are there any restrictions on the height of these structures?
A.  A building permit is required for stand alone structures that exceed 120 square feet in area.  Some gazebo/pergola type structures are not of typical “light frame construction” and are treated as pole construction projects that required structural engineering done by an engineer licensed in the State of Idaho.
 
Do I need an electrical permit to put in outdoor lighting?
A.  No permit is required if the outdoor lighting is low voltage.  A permit is required for 110 volt.