Permits & FAQ's

  • A building permit must be obtained for any construction, alteration, repair, demolition, or change to the use or occupancy of a building.
  • A wiring permit is required for any work to the electrical system in a structure, including low voltage wiring.
  • Any proposed plumbing or gasfitting must be completed under the respective permits.
  • Permit applications should be submitted before beginning the proposed work.
  • Electrical and Plumbing Permit Applications are available in the Library Basement Hallway or by calling the Plumbing or Wiring Inspectors (contact details above).
  • Click here for Permit Applications & Fees


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q. For which projects are building permits required? 

Most, but not all projects require a building permit. which indicates which activities require a permit.

Q. Does the Building Code define minimum requirements for building plan submissions?

   At a minimum, construction documents (for single- and two-family dwellings) shall include the following:

  1. Site plan;
  2. Foundation plan and details (as necessary);
  3. Floor plans (including basement and attic levels, if applicable);
  4. Exterior building elevations;
  5. Framing plans and\or building section(s) adequately depicting structural systems;
  6. Schedules, legends and\or details, adequately depicting doors, windows and related material installations;
  7. Fire protection system locations;

Q. Are permit inspections and final inspections from the Local Building Departments required?

Yes, after all necessary permits are acquired; the contractor is required to schedule inspections with the municipal inspector as the job progresses.
For example, if you were to construct a deck attached to your home, the contractor must call for inspections; at the placement of the footings, when the structural frame is completed and possibly at other points of construction as determined by the municipal inspector. Larger projects, such as the addition of a family room or bedroom, would require more points of inspection. Although inspection processes may vary slightly from town to town, typically inspections are required for the footings, foundation structural frame, insulation, exterior siding roofing, chimneys and fireplaces. Upon final inspection, a certification of occupancy may be issued.

Q:  Do I need a permit for a shed?

Sheds that are greater than 200 sq. ft. in area require a building permit and must be placed 30′ from the side property line and 30′ from the rear property line.

Sheds that are 200 sq. ft. or less in area, with a maximum length of 16′, do not require a building permit.

Q:  What are the minimum area, frontage requirements and setbacks in Hubbardston?

Residential 80,000 sq ft, 200 ft of frontage  Setbacks:

Front 75 feet -- Side and Rear: 30 feet

Q. My contractor told me I need to obtain the permits for my construction. May I obtain the relevant permits from my local building department, or is the contractor required to do that?

While you may certainly obtain your own permits, be aware that if you do, you will fall into a homeowner exemption that will disqualify you from being eligible to receive recourse through M.G.L c. 142A, the HIC Law, or the statutorily authorized Guaranty Fund, should a problem arise. It is the responsibility of the registered HIC to obtain all permits necessary for work covered by the Home Improvement Contractor Registration Law, M.G.L. c. 142A. If the HIC you are contracting with refuses, you may wish to reconsider using that contractor’s services.

Q. What if I choose to do the work or hire unlicensed, unregistered persons?

If you choose to perform building construction work on your own home, or if you choose to hire unlicensed, unregistered persons, you must secure your own building permit under what is called the homeowner exemption. In doing so, you assume all responsibility for the project (i.e. ensuring the end product conforms with all pertinent codes, laws and ordinances) and you forfeit any and all rights under the Home Improvement Registration program.