When is a Permit Required?

A permit is generally required for any new building, addition, alteration, repair, or change in use for an existing building or structure, and for site improvements.

Residential Examples


Examples of residential items that require a permit are:
  • Accessory structures, including carports, detached garages, patio covers, and sheds where the floor area exceeds 120 sq. ft.
  • Driveway replacements
  • Interior remodels
  • Reroofs
  • Repairs to damaged wood siding or stucco (if more than 32 sq. ft.)
  • Retaining walls supporting a surcharge
  • Swimming pools and portable spas if not plug-connected
  • Water heater replacements
  • Window replacements

Commercial Examples


Examples of commercial items that require a permit are:
  • Addition of walls 
  • Change in occupancy
  • Changes to the electrical, plumbing, or mechanical systems
  • Removal of walls between spaces
  • Shelving units / gondolas, counters, and partitions more than 6 ft. in height
  • Signs / copy changes

If you are unsure whether a permit is necessary, contact the Building Division at 408-778-6480 or via email.