Building Department Questions
A building permit is required for: construction, erection, alteration, modification, repair, and demolition of public and private buildings, structures, and facilities. This includes but is not limited to roofs, walls, awnings, windows, hurricane shutters, doors, swimming pools, fences, driveways, sidewalks, parking areas, screen enclosures, and any plumbing, mechanical and electrical components including: installation of the emergency generators, replacement of the water heaters and air conditioners.
Building Code is a document that applies to the design, construction, erection, alteration, modification, repair, or demolition of public or private buildings, structures, or facilities in this state and to the enforcement of such requirements and which allows effective and reasonable protection for public safety, health, and general welfare for all the people of Florida at the most reasonable cost to the consumer.
The Florida Building Code is organized to provide consistency and simplicity of use. The Florida Building Code shall be applied, administered, and enforced uniformly and consistently from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The Florida Building Code shall provide for flexibility to be exercised in a manner that meets minimum requirements, is affordable, does not inhibit competition, and promotes innovation and new technology.
The Florida Building Code establishes minimum standards primarily for public health and life safety, and secondarily for protection of property as appropriate.
A building permit may be obtained by either a home owner (for some projects) or licensed contractor hired to perform permitted work. This includes the following steps:
- A complete permit application must be submitted to the Building Department along with other necessary documentation including: property surveys, drawings reflecting proposed improvements or changes. In addition, projects or improvements exceeding $2500 in value require Notice of Commencement (document required by the Florida Statute protecting the homeowner from paying twice for improvements on the property.)
- All plans submitted are reviewed for compliance with the applicable building codes (Florida Building Code, National Electric Code, Florida Fire Prevention Code, Life Safety Code and Property Maintenance Code).
- Once the subject plans have been reviewed and approved depending on the scope of the work to be done, a number of required inspections are assigned.
- Once all required inspections have been completed and approved, upon request of the contractor, project receives the Certificate of Occupancy or Certificate of Completion.
The Building Division website provides a variety of information related to the permitting process. The most popular section for the builders is the site where you can download and print various applications and documents necessary for permitting and licensing, check the status of a permit, schedule or cancel an inspection, review the status of your inspections, check the plan review status of your permit application and even obtain checklists for anything from replacing the roof to construction of the swimming pool.
The Building Division enforces all Federal, State and local regulations pertaining to construction, erection, alteration, modification, repair, and demolition of public and private buildings, structures, and facilities. Functions of the Building Division include: permitting, plan review and inspection services as well as general assistance to the public. In addition Building Division staff is responsible for: performing post disaster damage assessments and assistance in the National Flood Insurance Program.