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Building Permits and Inspections
Building Permits and Inspections

If you're planning on making any changes or renovations to your space, you'll probably need to get a building permit. Building permits are required for building, structural, electrical, HVAC, and plumbing projects, and help to ensure that your space is safe for your team and your customers. Learn more about each step, from application to review to inspection.

Do you need a building permit?

If you're planning to do any construction, alteration, or repair work, you'll probably need to get a building permit. Building permits are issued by Municipal Building/Construction Departments and help to ensure that any work done in your municipality conforms with building code and zoning requirements that protect the safety of you, your team, and your customers.

Building permits are generally required for any building, structural, electric, HVAC, and plumbing projects. They can include projects such as:

  • New buildings or structures
  • Additions to a building
  • Structural alterations to a building or structure
  • Interior modifications and changes to a floor plan
  • Changes of building use and/or occupancy
  • Parking layout changes
  • Use-of-land projects, such as recycling deposit center, open air storage, outdoor temporary events
  • Signs and sign structures
  • Fences, retaining walls and shoring plans
How to get a building permit

Each muncipality may have a slightly different process, but most of the forms used in obtaining a Construction Permit can be used in any municipality. The Uniform Construction Code forms can be found at the link below, and should be filed with the local Building Department.

Contact the Business Action Center for further assistance.

Inspections

Once your building permit has been approved, you can begin your work. However, don't forget the critical step of scheduling the required inspections. Inspections are required before you cover or conceal any work that's been completed to ensure that the work you've done meets the permit requirements. Depending on your project type and size, you may need to schedule a few inspections – you can check with the local Building/Construction Department for a list of required inspections and at what stage in the project they must be performed.

Occasionally, the municipality may submit all or a portion of a construction project to a the State Department of Community Affairs (or to a nearby municipality) for review and inspection. This is typically done because the municipality does not have Sub-Code or inspection staff holding the appropriate license for the type of construction proposed, or because the staff member is has a conflict of interest and must recuse themselves form the project. This is not a reflection on your project, but an administrative action taken by the Construction Official.