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Local construction officials issue building permits for new construction, additions, and alterations. New construction permits are for new buildings. Permits for additions authorize work that adds space to an existing structure. Alterations also are for work on existing buildings, but no new space is added. Examples of alterations include tenant fit ups, new roofs, and repairs to existing structures.
A demolition permit authorizes the removal of an existing building. A construction official may issue a demolition permit for a residential or nonresidential structure. For demolitions that result in the loss of a dwelling unit (a house or apartment), we report the number of dwellings lost. For nonresidential demolitions, we report the number of demolition permits issued.Certificates of Occupancy
Construction officials issue certificates of occupancy at the end of the construction process, when buildings are complete and ready for occupancy.
New Home Warranties
New Jersey requires nearly every new house in the State be protected by a new home warranty to insure against major and minor defects that may result after construction. Most new dwellings are covered by warranties; the exceptions are apartments and new houses built directly by the homeowners themselves. Every three months, warranty companies send to the Department of Community Affairs information on the number of new homes enrolled in a new home warranty program. This information is used by the Department to create a central registry. It also is the basis for quarterly tables on the median and average sales prices of new homes.
The New Jersey Construction Reporter On-Line Magazine has highlights and summary data on building permits and certificates of occupancy from local construction offices throughout the State. It is published on a monthly basis. There is also an annual report. Prior to the January 2010 edition, the on-line issue was solely a narrative of major construction trends. Starting in January 2010, it was expanded to include these highlights, as well as summary tables on permits and certificates, authorizied housing, office, retail, and other commercial work. The data used in the publication is one of the few sources of information available from every locality, every month.