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April 4, 2019

Community Update

by Al Jimenez, Chief Building Official

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Things to Know Before Hiring a Contractor
‘To Hire or Not to Hire; That is the Question’

 First, let’s begin by identifying what work can be performed as an “Owner-Builder”

 Who is considered an owner-builder?

Any individual or group of individuals who own the property on which they plan to construct, alter, repair, improve, or remodel a building or structure is considered an “owner-builder”.

 Is an owner-builder required to have a license?

An owner-builder is exempt from licensure, but there are limitations.

A license is not required if:

• The owner-builder does the work himself or herself or through his or her own employees with wages as their sole compensation and the structure(s) is/are not intended for sale.

• The owner-builder contracts with properly licensed subcontractor(s).

• This exemption applies to the construction of a single-family residential structure and limits the number of structures intended or offered for sale to four or fewer in a calendar year.

• The owner-builder contracts with a General Building ("B") contractor.

• The number of structures is then unlimited.

 Is a homeowner required to obtain a license if he/she wants to improve his/her home?

A homeowner improving his or her principal place of residence is exempt from licensure if all the following exist:

  1. The work is performed prior to sale;
  2. The homeowner resides in the residence for the 12 months prior to completion of the work; and,
  3. The homeowner has not taken advantage of this exemption on more than two structures during any three-year period.

Are there any trades that property owners are prohibited from performing themselves?

Property owners are prohibited from performing well-drilling work covered under the Well Drilling (C-57) classification.

Does the owner-builder exemption apply to an individual who builds homes for resale (spec homes) and are there any limitations?

Yes.

The owner-builder exemption would apply to an individual who builds homes for resale under any of the following conditions:

• Licensed tradesmen are hired to perform all work on the project

• provided no more than four structures per calendar year are intended for resale.

• A licensed general contractor is hired to perform and/or subcontract the completion of all work on the project.

• No restriction on the number of structures completed per calendar year.

• The owner-builder performs the work, all or in part, and resides in the completed structure for one year prior to resale.

• Applies to not more than two structures in a three-year period.

For more information regarding owner-builder, see Section 7044 of the Business & Professions Code or The Risks of Being an Owner-Builder under the "Consumers" section of the CSLB website.

CSLB – Contractor State License Board, www.cslb.ca.gov

If you decide to hire a contractor, here are 10 tips you should follow:

  1. Hire only state-licensed contractors.
  2. Check a contractor’s license number at cslb.ca.gov or by calling 800-321-CSLB (2752).
  3. Get at least three bids.
  4. Get three references from each bidder and review past work in person.
  5. Make sure all project expectations are in writing and only sign the contract if you    completely understand the terms.
  6. Confirm that the contractor has workers’ compensation insurance for employees.
  7. Avoid paying more than 10% down or $1,000, whichever is less. * Avoid paying in cash.
  8. Avoid letting payments get ahead of the work.
  9. Keep a job file of all papers relating to your project, including all payments.
  10. Avoid making the final payment until you’re satisfied with the job.

* There is an exception to this rule for about a dozen contractors who have filed a blanket performance and payment bond with the Registrar. This information is noted on the contractor’s license detail page on CSLB’s website.

Tips from your Building Department –

• Be leery of a ‘contractor’ who asks you to pull the building permit, but they will do the work.

• Ask for a copy of the permit, especially if the contractor includes it in the invoice.

• Ask for a copy of the completed job card.

For further information, please contact the Cathedral City Building Department at 760-770-0340.

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NEWS

Cathedral City LGBT Days’ Bed Race Attracts Big Crowd and Big Winners

Cathedral City LGBT Days’ Bed Race Attracts Big Crowd and Big Winners

Thousands came to Downtown Cathedral City this past weekend for Cathedral City LGBT Days that featured a Friday Night Block Party, weekend pool parties, LIVE Music on the Main Stage, Food/Drinks, Resource Booths, and the infamous LGBT Days’ Bed Race.  Sponsored by CCBC Resort Hotel and the Runway Restaurant, the Bed Race emceed by Bella da Ball, was a crowd …Read more.

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FIREWORKS PROGRAM CONTINUES FOR 2019 HOLIDAY

FIREWORKS PROGRAM CONTINUES FOR 2019 HOLIDAY

The Cathedral City Fire Department will facilitate another year of Safe and Sane Fireworks sales, and enforcement of storage and discharge regulations for the 2019 Independence Day holiday.   Firework stand applications and program instructions are available for download from our website at www.cathedralcityfire.org.  Applications will be accepted at our Administrative Office located at 32100 Desert Vista Rd. beginning April …Read more.

Events

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Cristopher Cichocki’s “Desert Sea” Exhibit (February 15 - May 5)

Cristopher Cichocki’s “Desert Sea” Exhibit (February 15 - May 5)

Internationally recognized, Coachella Valley artist, Cristopher Cichocki, will create his latest art installation entitled, “Desert Sea,” on the Festival Lawn, 68-600 East Palm Canyon Drive, in Downtown Cathedral City with a scheduled opening on Friday, February 15, 2019 through Sunday, May 5, 2019. Desert Sea unveils a fusion of materials derived from the Coachella Valley that include Salton Sea barnacles, …

Read more.

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SCORE Quickbooks Workshops - Intermediate Course

SCORE Quickbooks Workshops - Intermediate Course

SCORE Quickbooks Workshops Intermediate Course Sponsored by the Cathedral City Economic Development Department, this workshop is designed for current users of Quickbooks Online (QBO) who want to expand their understanding and skills regarding functionality and navigation of the software.  It will address intermediate accounting principles for small businesses and record keeping with QBO as well and general best practices and …

Read more.

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Stop Identity Theft Program

Stop Identity Theft Program

To help STOP identity theft and as a service to its residents, the City of Cathedral City is hosting FREE Document Shredding Events. The Shredding Events are the first Saturday of the month October thru May each year.

Read more.

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Greater Palm Springs Fast Pitch for Entrepreneurs

Greater Palm Springs Fast Pitch for Entrepreneurs

The excitement is real as entrepreneurs from across the Coachella Valley compete in this Shark-Tank-style fast pitch competition. The audience will help select three winners who will take home cash prizes, and the top two contestants will advance to the countywide Fast Pitch Finale in Corona, CA. Part of Riverside County Innovation Month... Read more.

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Easter Kidapalooza

Bring the kids to Cathedral City’s Town Square Park in downtown for an event that is all about Kids! From 12 (noon) to 3:00 pm, kids will enjoy the fun of multiple bouncy houses surrounding Cathedral City’s Fountain of Life area.

For more information, Click Here.

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sday

Two for Tuesday

Cathedral City residents can ice skate for half-price on the first Tuesday of every month (excluding holidays) at Desert Ice Castle. Just bring proof of being a Cathedral City resident, such as an Driver’s license, copy of a utility bill, or any other form of residential proof.  Ages 3 years and up. The Time for Public Skate Available for "Two …

Read more.

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Coachella Valley Boxing Battle in the Desert

Coachella Valley Boxing Battle in the Desert

Come watch the sport of amateur boxing on the Festival Lawn in Downtown Cathedral City. Doors open at 5:30 pm 1st boxing match starts at 6:30 pm

Read more.

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For Questions or Comments, Contact Chris Parman, Communications and Events Manager
cparman@cathedralcity.gov