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Internal modifications of an apartment: how should you proceed?

If you own a home, you may have had to make some internal changes. While in most cases this type of work is small, there are some circumstances in which the changes to be made are more significant.

If you are planning maintenance or an extension, there is a good chance that you will have to communicate it to the competent bodies: if there is something that is not lacking in construction, it is certainly bureaucracy, with Municipalities and Regions that can request essential data and information. to issue the necessary authorizations or permits.

For this reason, it is important to be well informed about the most common legal obligations, in order to avoid errors (which can often cost a lot) and to proceed smoothly with the renovations.

Identification of the types of work

First of all, it is good to understand what type of intervention you are carrying out. To find out, simply read the Consolidated Building Act, which presents the various types of works that can be carried out, distinguishing them into:

  • Ordinary maintenance interventions. This category includes repairs and replacements of harnesses. Their purpose is to keep essential plants such as gas and water active;
  • Extraordinary maintenance This category includes the most significant works, those in which important parts of the built-up area are replaced or essential services are installed. To fall into this category of works, however, it is necessary that the overall volume of the built-up area does not change;
  • Conservative rehabilitation or restoration This category includes the conservation works of buildings of a certain historical and cultural value, aimed at maintaining their appearance and functionality over time;
  • Building renovation This category includes the most important works, capable of modifying the structure, volume and destination of the apartment.

What documentation is needed for internal changes?

If you are carrying out routine maintenance work it is not necessary to produce documentation. The free construction allows to carry out small repairs without having to justify the use. So you don’t have to worry about having to change the roller shutter, change the tiles on the kitchen floor or redo the bathroom. The same goes for if you want to redo the systems.

CILA for internal changes

The situation changes in the case of extraordinary maintenance works, such as those for moving doors or walls (which are not load-bearing). In this case, if you are the owner, you will need to send the completed and signed CILA (Certified Work Start Communication) related to the project to your Municipality.

SCIA Construction

If, on the other hand, your works concern structural parts of a certain importance, including for example walls and load-bearing pillars, the CILA will not be sufficient. The document that you will have to forward to the competent bodies is the SCIA (Certified Start of Activity Report). In the SCIA, the timing and specifications regarding the work you are going to carry out on the town must be reported in detail, trying to be as precise as possible. Same permission also to modify or create windows on the external facade.


Finally, if you have to carry out renovations that change the destination and purpose of the structure, you will always have to ask the municipality for permission to start the work. The work plan that will be applied and the final purpose of the same must be presented so that the expert opinion can establish its effectiveness and usefulness.

If you have to make internal or external changes to the apartment unless you are a real expert (both from a practical and bureaucratic point of view) we recommend that you contact a company for interior renovation. In addition to guaranteeing you an optimal result, many companies also offer consultancy services regarding tax practices and compliance. One less hassle as well as being an advantage in making you calmer regarding the regularity of the work.

Internal renovations and civil code

If you need to make internal changes to a house in an apartment building, it is important that the works comply with both civil and specific law. It is the civil code, in fact, that establishes that in the parts for common use, you cannot do works that could cause damage to the stability or safety of the common area.

To act, you must first inform the administrator, who must communicate this action at the meeting and decide on its beginning. Attention, this does not mean that the rest of the condominiums must necessarily agree. This is more an official communication and no one will be able to retaliate against the permission obtained. Being the condominium regulations are quite diversified, it is good to check them to be sure not to run into dubious situations.

Finally, in order not to risk having problems in the management of the works, I advise you to always operate in compliance with the times in which it is permissible to carry out works that make a lot of noise. This way you won’t have to pay for jobs and compromise good neighborly relations.