Should I be concerned if my building has open violations?

The existence of an open violation(s) is not an automatic cause for alarm. Violations can be for major or minor offenses of the Building Code or Zoning Resolution. Violations can remain open even after the offending condition is corrected because a Certificate of Correction has not been filed indicating that the condition has been corrected.

When am I required to obtain a work permit?

A work permit is required for the cutting away of any wall, floor, or roof construction, or any portion thereof; or the removal, cutting, or modification of any beams or structural supports; or the removal, change, or closing of any required means of egress; or the rearrangement or relocation of any parts of the building affecting loading or exit requirements, or light, heat, ventilation, or elevator requirements; additions to, alterations of, or rearrangement, relocation or removal of any standpipe or sprinkler piping, water distribution piping, house sewer, private sewer, or drainage system, including leaders, or any soil, waste or vent pipe, or any gas distribution system, or any other work affecting health or the fire or structural safety of the building.

What’s the difference between a demolition and an alteration?

Demolition is the removal of the entire building, including the foundation. In an alteration you may remove interior and exterior walls, but not the entire foundation. An alteration can also be the addition of stories; an enlargement; or a new structure built on top of an existing foundation.

Why doesn't my building have a Certificate of Occupancy?

Buildings built prior to 1938 that have had no changes made to its occupancy nor egress since then were not required to have a Certificate of Occupancy.

How can I legally change the occupancy type of my building?

You will need to consult with a New York State Registered Architect or Professional Engineer who can advise you regarding zoning and construction requirements. An application must be approved by the Department and a permit obtained prior to any change being made. Upon completion of the work, and a satisfactory final inspection, a Certificate of Occupancy will be issued.