I have buyers interested in three properties to start the New Year.
One of my business practices is exploring this online history of the property as best I can.
All three properties, for three different buyers, representing three different eras of building (1923, 1979, 2002) had an online permit history at http://www.pprbd.org which showed voided permits.
That word, VOID, sounds so nasty. It sounds like you are stepping off into the abyss. The first association a buyer is likely to make is “oh no, something is dramatically wrong with my house. The regional building guys black-flagged my house.” The reality is usually something far less noxious.
I really like the PPRBD website and you can drill into the history of any recorded permit and find out what inspections were done, who did, how many times a real estate agent called in the permit (wow) and why it was voided. Here is an example:
It gives good information as to what is going on at a property and also says what happened, when. What I have above is pretty standard, and in the interest of not compromising anyone’s personal property information unnecessarily, I suggest you look at your own property or one you’re interested in to explore it further. But in the case of this permit, it was pulled in one year, work continued for several months, and 18 months later, two years on the calendar, a final inspection found no one home when Regional arrived to check out the property. Everything was fine up until the final, but without a final, the permit was void.
Why this is important:
All year we will focus on the increasingly mobile society, and the strange contradictory pattern of buyers buying for the long-term. Buyers are either getting more mobile and more apt to considering renting as a way of life, or if they are owners, buying for the desire to own on the long-term. If you buy with the desire to own a place 10 to 15 years, you likely are not buying “opportunity” but instead “certainty”. Does a voided permit smack of certainty… or uncertainty?