For architects who work on commercial construction projects, project management is an essential but complex part of the job. Client meetings, land use and site planning, coordinating with civil engineers and landscape architects, and acquiring building permits can all take up a lot of time. Building permits in particular often require hours devoted to research and gathering the appropriate information, and that’s all before you can even submit an application. On top of that, requirements vary based on location and project, so no matter how many years you’ve been working in the industry, building permit questions are likely to arise.

That’s where permit expediters come in. With an experienced permit expediter, you can focus on your core service—designing attractive and functional spaces for clients—while your expediter handles the red tape with the municipality. Permit expediters are also an invaluable resource for answering all of those building permit questions that come up throughout the process. But when is it the right time to hire a permit expediter and how exactly will an expediter impact your commercial project? The answers to those questions are right here.

Building Permit Questions: When to Get Permit Expediters Involved

When you start on a new commercial project, planning out your timeline is crucial for ensuring success. In the beginning, this can include a number of tasks, but at the basic level will involve steps such as:

  • Project initiation—defining the scope of the project and conducting client consultation meetings
  • Site analysis and zoning compliance—identifying constraints and opportunities and ensuring the project falls within zoning regulations
  • Building code compliance—ensuring your project is set up for success with building codes and compliance

Because building codes are a part of the process from the beginning, it’s best to involve a permit expediter as soon as you can.

Permit expediters play a fundamental role in helping you set expectations and accurately plan out the rest of your project’s timeline. Expediters who are familiar with the municipalities you’ll be working with can also foresee challenges ahead of time and can help you navigate the intricacies of more complex review systems.

How Permit Expediters Impact Your Entire Project

When it comes to hiring a permit expediter, another common building permit question that architects have is whether expediters can really make a noticeable difference. The short answer? Yes.

In fact, permit expediters like those at Scout Services are essential for streamlining your procedures and enhancing your project efficiency. They achieve this by taking on a variety of project-critical tasks, including:

  • Navigating the regulatory landscape—Thorough knowledge of the codes and review processes, permitters navigate the regulatory landscape on your behalf. This includes knowing which requirements apply to your specific project, what you’ll need in order to apply, and any special considerations that may come up.
  • Facilitating a more efficient application process—Permitting experts like those at Scout Services ensure that your permit applications are complete and accurate so that you can get into review on the first go.
  • Mitigating risks and delays—Closely related to the last point, permit expediters help mitigate risks and delays by ensuring accuracy on your application. They also provide assistance in addressing any comments and navigating follow-up reviews as needed.
  • Enhancing communication between stakeholders—Permit expediters act as liaisons with the local authorities. This means that you are regularly updated on the progress of your project, which in turn helps you set realistic expectations for your stakeholders.
  • Reducing the administrative burden related to permitting—Finally, permit expediters are instrumental in relieving you of the administrative burden that usually comes with the permitting process. When expediters have a working knowledge of the municipality you’re in, they can help ensure that all of your paperwork is in order from start to finish.

Finding the Right Permit Expediter

Another common building permit question that comes up is what you should look for when you’re looking for the right permit expediter. This may vary based on your specific needs, but in general, you’ll want to find an expediter who has the knowledge you need, a proven track record of success, and the right reputation for timeliness and transparency.

Finding a permit expediter who has expertise in the municipality you’re working in is absolutely essential. Again, building codes and regulations can vary drastically  from location to location and project to project. To complicate things further, these regulations also change on a regular basis. Expediters like the experts at Scout Services stay up-to-date on all changes to regulations in municipalities across the nation, giving you access to the most relevant information.

It’s also important for permit expediters to have a proven track record of success. Permit expediters that have experience in your specific industry can be a major asset because they’ll know what permits you need upfront. It’s also helpful to partner with an expediting partner that specializes in commercial projects, as they’ll have the expertise to help you succeed.

And finally, be sure to find a permitting partner who offers comprehensive services and has a reputation for timeliness and transparency. Your permit expediter should be communicative at all stages of the permitting process. And, while permit experts must work within the confines of the review system, there are a number of ways that they can help you meet your deadlines by avoiding delays and dealing with problems quickly.

Partner with Scout Services National Permit Expediting

At Scout Services, we’ve successfully navigated the permitting process for countless commercial projects across a wide range of industries. With years of experience behind us and a database of over 7,700+ locations, we have the local expertise and the national reach to work in any municipality across the nation.

Our specialty is navigating the entire permitting process for commercial projects, whether you have a single-site office renovation project, a multi-state retail rollout, or anything in between.

Are you looking for a permit expediter who can handle anything? Get in touch with our team today to get started.