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How To Find Building Plans For My House

The building plans of a house show the position, dimensions and specification of every part of your house. They are of great importance when remodelling and renovating your home. Sometimes when a new house is purchased, buyers don’t get these relevant documents. If you fall into that category of buyers, more often than not, the question, “how do I find building plans for my house?” will come up. You should have an answer to this pressing question by the time you’re done with this article.

Houses built in rural areas sometimes do not have blueprints or building plans. So, do not unnecessary force the issue of finding blueprints for a rural home. However, if you purchased a city home, the blueprints might be kept in the attic, basement or a shed. Do some digging, and you may find some documents with cogent information left by the original owners, saving you from foreseeable stress. Sometimes you might not be so lucky and combing the attic will bear no results. Do not worry, let’s go over some easy steps on how to find building plans for your house.

1. Visit Your Local Municipality Office

Visiting your local municipality is a crucial step in finding building plans for your home. You may be fortunate to get your blueprints right away. If your building plans are considerably old, finding them in your local municipality office is pure luck. If you do not find them there, do not be dismayed.

All you have to do is get useful information about your house that will make your search much easier. It is vital to have all the necessary information such as your real estate identification number, address and legal description. Fill all the required forms and ask for all the documents related to your home, including occupancy certificates, inspection reports and permits. These documents contain contact information for the contractors, architects that were involved in your building. All these can be gotten for a small fee.

2. Contact Your Realtor

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Contacting your realtor or the estate agent who helped purchase your home will hasten the process of getting the floor plans for your house. If your house is not older than 50 years, they may be able to find the building plans for your home. Realtors work with a lot of houses, and they know the stock plan or housing pattern in your locality. Houses with very similar blueprints save money and time. However, keep in mind that your house may have a slight variation with the stock plan or master plan in your locality.

3. Contact The Home’s Former Owners

Getting the floor plans for your house might be as easy as writing 1,2,3 if your home’s former owners have them. If your house was purchased, first you have to search public records for the previous owners. Then contact them and ask for the building plans. If they do not have it, ask for the details of the building’s architect, engineers and others involved in its construction. They may still have the blueprints in their possession. Also, if the previous owner got a loan to construct the building, their bank may have the floor plans you need for your home.

4. Contact The Building Inspector’s Office

Builders require a permit for remodelling or extending a building. This ensures that the structure will be built in compliance with the building standards. This permit, sometimes including the elevation drawing and floor plans, is filed in the inspection office. Building permits and inspection reports contain the name of the contractor, architect or builder who constructed your home. Visit the office to get all the relevant information you need to get your house blueprints. If present, your house blueprints will be provided to you for a small fee.


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5. Talk To Neighbours

If you don’t want to reach out to your realtor, talking to your neighbours may just be the easiest way of finding floor plans for your house. If you notice that the houses in your neighbourhood have similar designs or the same stock plan, talk to a neighbour of yours to get your floor plan. However, ensure that your home’s layout or your neighbour’s has not been previously modified.

6. Consult Fire Insurance Maps

Because of the industrial revolution in the 1800s, the density of buildings in the UK increased. There was a need for urban mappings to assess the risks of fire. If your house was built in that era, you should consult fire insurance maps. You will probably find your home’s floor plans among the insurance documents.

These insurance maps provide a detailed description of how historical buildings were used back in the day. So, even if you don’t find the building plans outright, a proper perusal of the maps should provide you with all the useful information you may need to find them. Fire insurance maps can be obtained at your city hall or the British Library.

The British Library created a portal which enables people to georeference thousands of digitised historical maps and layouts. This has made it much easier to find floor plans for your house online now.

7. Contact Your Architect Or Contractor

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Most times, architects or contractors who build homes still keep copies of the blueprints. If they do not have, you can hire an architect to draw up the layout all over again. It is much better to get the architect who worked on the home. This step should be taken as a last resort as it will definitely cost you.

8. Check Other Sources For Information

If your house was built in the early 1900s or earlier, chances are your house was built following a pattern. Looking through historic catalogues or historical plan books will prove useful for your building plan investigation. Check for archived newspapers in public libraries with real estate adverts that contain house blueprints. They should all be helpful in your search.

In Conclusion

Finding your house’s building plans may seem like hard work to you and in fact, most people don’t usually have the time to do these investigations. If you fall into this category, there is a way to get your building plans with no stress at all. You can hire professionals who work towards high standards to give you the total satisfaction you deserve. At Architectural Design and Plan, we provide a wide range of services such as architectural survey and design. Contact us today to enjoy our bespoke services and much more.


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