When you repair or build a structure, you need to follow the established building code to ensure it is stable. Building Code provides detailed guidelines to ensure all properties in the county are safe to use. Local authorities enforce the code by giving permits. You need one for almost all types of repairs, renovations, and constructions with a few exceptions. At Service First Permits, we can help you through the process and make sure you get the permits quickly.

Building Permit in East Palo Alto, CA

Getting permits is an intricate process and involves a lot of communication with the city’s building department. While they try to keep things as streamlined as possible, people do experience delays. Here’s a look at how to get a permit:

  1. Determine The Type of Application You Need

There are different requirements for different kinds of projects. You’ll need to fill out various forms for renovation, single-family properties, multi-family properties, solar installations, inverter systems, signs, plumbing, electrical, etc. Some upgrades and changes don’t need plan submissions while others need detailed, attested plans.

Applications without plans are approved quickly, and sometimes all it takes is a few hours to get the permit over the counter at the building department. Applications with plans require more time because multiple experts evaluate your request. For example, if you’re renovating your entire single-family home, the plans will be sent to an electrician, architect, plumber, engineer, and other such professionals.

  1. Preparing The Plans

The next step is to prepare the plans for submission. You will need three or four attested copies for the plans because these will be sent to different departments for approval. It is a good idea to get all the paperwork assessed by a qualified architect or designer familiar with the applicable building code.

Building Permit Plan Approval Process in East Palo Alto, CA

  1. Getting the Property Valuation

You need to state your property’s valuation before and after the construction, on the application. It will determine the approval time and fees for the permit. Plans with higher valuation have higher permit fees and take more time to assess.

A professional inspector or real estate agent can help you with the valuation, which includes the cost of labor, land, and the final value of the property. This information needs to be accurate to avoid legal problems down the line.

  1. Fill Out the Form

The building department website provides permit forms for every category. You need to choose the one applicable to your project and fill out the details. There are different forms for residential construction, residential renovation, commercial construction or renovation, electrical installation, plumbing installation, etc.

It is vital to make sure all the information is correct because the department will reject inaccurate or incomplete applications. You will have to go through the entire process and pay the fees again. You can ask the information desk for assistance with the forms. Alternatively, you can hire a professional to handle the task. If all the information is accurate and nothing is missing, you have a higher chance of getting a permit in your first try.

  1. Plan Checks

The application is sent to around five different departments for assessment. Experts scrutinize the design and related details to look for code violations. If they find any errors, they mark it out on the plan and send it back. This is called the ‘plan check’ and it can delay permit approval by several weeks, if not months.

If your packet comes back, you would have to check the plan, look at the code violations, and alter the design based on their recommendations before resubmitting the paperwork. In most cases, people get their permits on the first or second try, and the whole process can take anywhere between 2 to 4 weeks.

  1. Picking Up The Permit

You are required to pick up the permit within 100 days of its issue. Failure to do so will lead to cancelation, and you will have to resubmit the application to get a new one. You can get a one-time extension for 365 days if needed, but that will require a separate written request and a small fee.

The county will send you a notice a few weeks before the deadline as a reminder. A canceled permit can’t be reactivated.

  1. Checking The Status

Modern technology has made it easier for people to submit requests and check the status of the permit approval. You just need to visit the Department of Building’s website and check the status with your application number.

The department has a strict timeline and will process your request within that time to avoid a backlog so you can expect approval within a few weeks. If you face any issues, you can call the department directly and make inquiries. They have a customer service line dedicated to building permits. East Palo Alto also has an app for submitting and tracking building permit applications.

Work With Professional Permit Expediters in East Palo Alto

The permit pulling process can be complicated and time-consuming, especially if you have never done it before or are new to the county. The East Palo Alto Department of Building makes it as straightforward as possible, but there are still several challenges that can result in a delay. That’s why you can benefit from hiring professionals for this task.

Our team will make sure your application is rock solid and accurate. We’ll double-check the plans and correct any errors we find before submitting it to the department. We will also track the progress, contact the department if needed, handle plan checks, and retrieve the permit once it’s granted. You can sit back and relax while our team handles all these aspects.

If you want to know more about how to apply for permits or wish to consult with us at Service First Permits in California, don’t hesitate to reach out. Our team will be happy to answer all of your questions.