I have been in the deck industry in one way or another for the last 15 years. I know that in Austin Texas the typical deck builder does not obtain building permits. This is an example that we never want to see. Although it may seem like a time constraint, you must get a permit to protect yourself as the contractor if nothing else. The hour that it takes down at the city is better than the years that it can damage your reputation, not to mention the people that could be seriously injured.