That's the thing. When we bought the house, the basement was advertised as being "partially finished", meaning about 2/3rds of it was finished, and 1/3rd was storage area. However, that claim was made either by the homeowner or the realty company, because according to the Village, it isn't finished space (based on the square footage they have on record).
I can indeed download the building code from the Village web site. I have done so. However, none of the things I'm doing are out of the ordinary. Basic framing, insulation, drywall, electrical. No plumbing, no heating. Actually, the heating was in place, but I did upgrade the air return.
Anyway...fines for doing work (whether it was correct or not) is double to cost of the necessary permit. Wouldn't break the bank by any means, but it would be very inconvenient if walls had to come down while we're trying to sell the place!
I'm not too worried about it. I was more looking for input on how house listings can be misleading, and what kind of reporting happens between an appraiser and the local officials. Apparently, not much.