The City of White Plains Building Department is fast-tracking the permit approval process for homeowners and businesses who come in for a permit to address storm-related damage.
The Building Department has been expediting these permit requests since Hurricane Sandy hit our area because they know how important it is that this work move forward as quickly and smoothly as possible.
Without this certificate, there is no way for the resident or business to know for certain that the work was completed properly and to code.
The Building Department is available to answer questions about the permit process for electrical, plumbing, building and sign permits, Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Please call (914)422-1269.
General tips for homeowners when dealing with home improvement contractors:
- Homeowners should be wary of home improvement contractors who may suddenly appear in the neighborhood in the coming days and weeks.
- The Westchester County ConsumerDepartment offers valuable information on their website: www.westchestergov.com/consumer for homeowners who are looking to engage a home improvement contractor.
Here are someadditional tips from the County's Consumer Department:
- If you haven't done so, call your insurance company as soon as you can. Many insurance companies have existing relationships with home repair contractors.
- Watch out for contractors who are suddenly in the area. Fly-by-night contractors will take advantage of homeowners in need.
- Don't get rushed into signing a contract or agreeing to repairs. Avoid contractors who demand payment in cash or want more than one-third of the total payment before work has begun.
- Do not agree to an oral contract. Get everything you can in writing. Insist on a written contract that sets forth all the important details of the job. That includes a detailed scope of work, a start date, a completion date, cancellation clause, warranty information and aschedule of payments.
- Get at least three estimates. In reviewing the estimates, don't always go with the lowest bidder. A higher bid may be worth it if the contractor is the most experienced, uses better materials and keeps to a timeline.
- Consumers who need to purchase essential goods and services need to take notice of what they are paying for these items and should contact the department if prices seem to be much higher than normal.
- Make sure that the electrical and plumbing contractors (if required) are licensed by the County of Westchester.
- Make sure all contractors are insured.
This article was contributed by White Plains Mayor Thomas Roach's office.