When is a permit required?

A building permit is generally required when changes or alterations are made to a residential building or when any new construction is undertaken. Mechanical and plumbing work also require permits and inspections. Electrical permits are obtained at Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

Examples of when a permits is required:

  • New construction of a single-family dwelling
  • New construction of a duplex or accessory dwelling unit
  • Additions, alterations and remodels to existing structures
  • Adding a garage, carport, deck over 30” in height or a covered patio
  • Adding or removing wall(s)
  • Converting basement, attic or garage into living space
  • Changing the footprint of an existing structure in any way
  • Adding a second story
  • Reroofing/siding
  • Window replacement
  • Sheds over 200 square feet
  • New fences over 42”
  • Lawn sprinklers
  • Water heaters, toilets, and sinks
  • Retaining walls over 4” in height or subject to surcharge
  • A/C units, furnace, or ductwork
  • Woodstove or pellet stove
  • Grading (moving or disturbing) earth over 50 cubic yards

Examples of when a permit is not required:

  • Fences less than 42” in height
  • Decks less than 30” in height
  • Sheds 200 square feet or less
  • Painting, carpeting, cabinets, countertops and similar finish work
  • Patio and concrete slabs on the ground
  • Replace of existing fences that meet City height requirements (BGMC 17.135.080)

Show All Answers

1. Why is a permit required?
2. When is a permit required?
3. How do I apply for a permit?
4. Residential Building Permit Process
5. Electrical, Mechanical and/or Plumbing Work
6. Research
7. Things to Consider
8. What are setbacks?
9. Are there any site constraints on your property?
10. When is Structural Engineering Required?
11. Fees