For many years, getting permits for plumbing work in NYC was a slow process. The entire system was paper-based, with complicated forms that had to be filled out and filed with the Department of Buildings. Approvals took time and there was little to no transparency in the process. Construction professionals and the general public wanted a better system, and this week, the Department of Building announced the launch of DOB NOW, an online portal that should streamline the entire process.
While DOB NOW will eventually serve all construction industries, it has begun by making sprinkler and plumbing system applications available online. Building owners are required to have approved, operational sprinkler systems in place. Sprinkler systems must be inspected periodically to make sure they are working as intended. Any components that aren’t working properly need to be repaired or replaced by a licensed NYC plumber. While sprinkler systems generally have a long expected life, upgrades may be required periodically to keep your plumbing in compliance with DOB regulations.
The new DOB NOW portal should streamline the approval process, making the sprinkler maintenance and repair process much quicker for property owners. Additionally, it will be faster for your NYC plumber to get the permits for new plumbing system installations, as well as renovation and upgrade projects. Modernizing the permitting system will take a number of years, with the eventual goal of allowing homeowners real-time tracking of work being done on their properties by construction professionals.
Until these upgrades are fully implemented, the best way to stay appraised of construction work being done on your properties is through clear, consistent communication with your contractors. When you begin a plumbing project, including sprinkler repair or renovation work, your NYC plumber should provide you with a clear timeline. There may be times when unexpected issues put a project behind schedule: a good plumber will let you know about these issues as they arise so you can adjust your timelines accordingly.