The Best Way: Building Departments Sticky

The best way to deal with Building Departments, is to have somebody do it for you. True Story! Unless you know at least a little about the process, you will frustrate the heck out of Staff and yourself. But if you don’t want to hire somebody else, going to do it yourself, follow my lead here.

  • Almost every building Department has a flyer or downloadable document that provides basic instructions for doing most anything there. DOWNLOAD and READ IT!
  • After you have read over the instructions, you will have questions. There will be phone and/or email contact information on the instructions, use it and ask your questions.
  • Follow the instructions and download the applications required for your specific project. Most Building Departments require a Planning and Building Permit Application.
  • The instructions should note the copies necessary to be made of drawings for submission with your applications. Many Building Departments now accept submission via the Internet. If that is the case for your Building Department, you only upload it 1 time. You may have other documents required also, such as Structural Calculations, Title24, or documents that demonstrate electrical or gas load, or possibly something else. The City Staff will let you know if you forgot something. Not having all the required documents included in your submission will likely cost you weeks of delay as the Plan Checker will reject your submission, requiring you resubmit with the required inclusions
  • Provided you do everything required up to this point, submit your applications, drawings. support documents to the Building/Planning Department, say a brief prayer, cross your fingers, or wiggle your nose hoping they approve your submission and give you a Building Permit.
  • It hardly ever works out that way and about 2 weeks to a month later you get your submission returned “DENIED” with notes telling you what the City wants you to corrected for your next submission. Make the corrections and then resubmit. Again hoping you get your building permit

Or, do it the easy way. 1stRateServices provides Permitting Services. Save yourself the frustration and headaches and give them a call to see if they can accommodate your needs, and pay them to do it. Just call 510-940-5962 and talk with Rich.

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