How To Close Open And Expired Permits On A House

Open and expired permits
When selling a home, you must confirm that there are no open or expired permits for the property.

At any given time there are thousands of open and expired permits at your local city, town, or county. In fact, many homeowners reading this article will likely have an open or expired permit on their home that they are not even aware of. Although this may not seem like a significant observation, it can certainly become significant when it comes to selling a home. We discuss some things to consider when closing old or expired permits below.

2019 House Bill 447

House Bill 447 was signed into law in the State of Florida by Governor DeSantis in 2019. This law specifically addresses open and expired permits. With this law, local governments are:

  • Authorized to close a building permit six years after the issuance of the permit if the local government determines that no apparent safety hazards exist.
  • Prohibited from penalizing an “arm’s length purchaser” of property solely because a previous owner failed to close a building permit.

Steps on how to close out old permits and expired permits

Although House Bill 447 is extremely helpful for permits that are six years old or older, it is quite common to uncover open or expired permits on your home that are less than six years old. If this is the case, it is important to be proactive in your search. Of course, it is also critical to always be organized with all paperwork for any work that you have done at your property. In addition, here are a few helpful tips when closing open and expired permits.

  1. Contact your local building department. They will be able to tell you what steps you need to take to close out the permit.
  2. Gather all of the necessary paperwork. This may include the original permit application, inspection reports, and any other documentation related to the work that was done.
  3. Pay any outstanding fees. There may be a fee associated with closing out a permit.
  4. Schedule a final inspection. Once you have all of the necessary paperwork and have paid any outstanding fees, you can schedule a final inspection with your local building department.
  5. Once the inspection is complete, the permit will be closed out.


Closing out old and expired permits may seem like a hassle, however it should be included as part of the regular maintenance of your home. Although it may not seem important, it can become a critical component of a future home sale. When selling your home, you always want to make the process as seamless as possible. Something as simple as an open or expired permit can certainly delay or even derail a potential home sale.

Are you thinking about buying or selling a property in South Florida? We can help! Contact Natasha at Live South Florida Realty, Inc. today! Also, don’t forget to download the free Florida Home Search app for your mobile device & have the power of the South Florida MLS in the palm of your hand!

By natasha moore

REALTOR® with Live South Florida Realty, Inc.