WORKING ON THE "DOWN-LOW" - "should I get a permit for that?"
No on really wants to get permits for work they are doing on their home. Frankly, many steps of the process can be intimidating:
filling out the paperwork
drawing up presentable and understandable plans
navigating the permit office
actually doing the work up to code
scheduling the inspector to come to you house
having the inspector nit-pick everything you've done