Contact Us

Permits and Inspections Office
900 E. Broad St., Room 108
Richmond, VA 23219

Permit Center Open for Walk-in:
     Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Phone Line Open:
     Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Inspection Scheduling Assistance
Phone: 804-646-1628

Please contact if you need help with the Online Permit Portal

Permits and Inspections

Commissioner of Buildings - David L. Alley III

Emergency Information
If you need a permit to restore power, water, heat, or for other emergencies, please contact and COPY

Permit Application GuideOnline Permit Portal









New Directory: This new Directory has been added to provide another level of customer service for our community to utilize. Please use this Directory to easily locate specific staff members associated with your project. Located on the Quick Links tool bar at the left of your screen.


Public Notice

The Permits and Inspections Bureau is dedicated to providing our services within our established goal times and we will continue to serve our customers as quickly as possible. Our intake, review and inspection times have never been better than now.  Please see our current review times below:

•    Online submittal review: 3-5 business days.  
•    Initial Plan Review: 5-10 business days for projects $1-$1.5 mil. 
•    Initial Plan Review: 10-20 business days for projects $1.5 mil- $10.0 mil.
•    Initial Plan Review: 20-30 business days or more depending on the size and complexity of the project.
•    Inspections same day as the scheduled date.

Note: Set goals are for the Permits and Inspections Bureau only, other city departments may take longer depending on staffing and/or additional information required from applicant. All review times stop if waiting on return comments or additional information from the applicant.  Please feel free to contact us directly should need any additional information about our processes at (804) 646-4169

New Customer Service Line: Call 804-646-4169 to ask a question or to check on the status of a permit.

New Expedited Submittal Program: Please notify Karen Paquette ( and CC after submitting the following types of permits:

•    Emergency permits to restore electrical, gas, or water service for an existing occupied structure
•    Derelict Building Program and associated trade permits
•    City of Richmond interdepartmental projects
•    City-approved third-party agency plan review projects
•    Solar projects

The Permit Center, located in City Hall Room 108, is open 8:00am-1:00pm Monday-Friday for limited services that require in-person interaction that cannot be duplicated by electronic means. 

To schedule an appointment or for customer service inquiries e-mail:

Permits and Inspections:


Field inspections are continuing for all project types.

Third Party Inspections:

Customers may use our limited 48-hour third party inspection policy for individual inspections when the building official is unable to perform a scheduled inspection within two working days of a request or an agreed upon date or if authorized for other circumstances in the building official’s written policy. Third party inspections shall be requested, and the inspection reports submitted, in accordance with the City’s official policy. For more information contact

The Bureau of Permits and Inspections reviews applications and construction documents for the construction, alterations and improvements to all new and existing structures in the City of Richmond. After permits are issued, the bureau inspects the work at specific stages through the completion of the job. This process is to ensure the life safety and code compliance of buildings. The process provides safe buildings for citizens, whether they live in, work or are visiting the City of Richmond.

Our staff and department is dedicated to helping you build a better, code-compliant City of Richmond.

Forms & Permit Applications

A building permit must be obtained prior to commencing any new construction or alterations to a building. In the City of Richmond, a building permit only covers the building and structural portion of a project. The permit is only reviewed for compliance with the building code. Any electrical, mechanical, and plumbing work for a project will be done under a separate trade permit. Reviews for code-compliance will be done as those permits are submitted.

Building permits are typically reviewed by multiple agencies. In addition to the Building Code review, permits may be forwarded to some or all of the following departments:

  • Zoning
  • Planning and Preservation
  • Land Use Administration
  • Commission of Architectural Review
  • Public Works
  • Public Utilities
  • Water Resources
  • Code Enforcement / Property Maintenance

These agencies would review a specific aspect of the proposed construction to verify compliance with their regulations.

Building Codes for Richmond, Virginia 

Applicants submitting for permit between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022 shall be permitted to choose whether to comply with the provisions of VUSBC-2018 or the provisions of VUSBC-2015 per Section 103.2 VCC-2018.

One and Two-Family Building Codes

Codes Document Year
Elevator Code ASME17.1 2016
Virginia Residential Code Virginia Edition 2018
Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code Virginia Edition 2018

Commercial Building Codes

Codes Document Year
Accessible and Useable Buildings and Facilities ANSI A117.1 2009
Elevator Code ASME17.1 2016
Fire Sprinkler Code   2016
Flood Resistant Design and Construction ASCE 24-14 2014
Virginia Construction Code Virginia Edition 2018
Virginia Energy Conservation Code Virginia Edition 2018
Virginia Fuel Gas Code Virginia Edition 2018
Virginia Mechanical Code Virginia Edition 2018
Virginia Plumbing Code Virginia Edition 2018
International Swimming Pool and Spa Code   2018
Virginia Existing Building Code Virginia Edition 2018
National Electrical Code   2017
National Fire Alarm Code   2016
Standard for Single & Multiple Station Carbon Monoxide Alarms UL2034 2008 with revisions through February 2009
Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code   2018

The following are Structural Design Requirements specific to Richmond, Virginia

  • Frost Depth - 18 inches
  • Basic Design Wind Speed For Risk
    • Category I Buildings - 105 mph
    • Category II Buildings - 115 mph
    • Category III Buildings - 120 mph
    • Category IV Buildings - 130 mph
  • Snow Load - 20 psf
  • Seismic Design Category - B

All services are now being processed through one of two online gateways: the City of Richmond’s Online Permitting Portal (OPP) and our OneDrive document processing system. Processing times for some application types may take as long as 2-3 weeks. Applications and plans are being reviewed in the order in which they are received.

Mail and Fax Services:

Applications and payments received by mail are still being accepted, however, we are not currently conducting business by fax.

Online Permit Portal:

The Online Permit Portal (OPP) should be used for Commercial and Residential Building permits, Commercial, Electrical and Mechanical permits, all Residential trade permits (Electrical, Gas Piping, Mechanical, Plumbing), Certificates of Zoning Compliance (CZC’s), and Plan of Developments (POD’s).


Microsoft OneDrive should be used to submit documents and applications that cannot be submitted through the Online Permit Portal. This includes permit extensions, cancellations, modifications, contractor changes, amendments to the scope of work, responses to plan review comments and post permit revisions.

Verifying Business Licenses:

The City Finance Business Unit has Customer Service Representatives available with access to MUNIS to verify if a business has a valid business license in the City of Richmond. They can be reached by telephone at (804) 646-6662. The door to Room 103 is open, please come in and ask for assistance should you have additional questions or concerns, or wish to speak to a Customer Service Supervisor.

Construction Document Submission Requirements

Fee Schedule

The best way to check the status of a permit is through the city's Online Permit Portal.

The City of Richmond Bureau of Permits and Inspections has initiated a new Third-Party Plan Review and Inspections Program that will allow developers and property owners the ability to contract directly with qualified Third-Party Plan Review and/or Inspection Agencies to perform building plan review and inspections as an alternative to the City’s standard process. The program sets forth the minimum qualifications, administrative guidelines and procedures established and implemented by the City of Richmond for Third-Party Agencies to ensure that all plan reviews and/or inspections conducted by Third-Party Agencies are at the highest professional level and to ensure a process for verification and auditing of the Third-Party Agencies. The program also establishes an application process for Third-Party Agency certification.

Click here to learn more about the Third-Party Program.

As of March 1, 2015 City of Richmond Department of Building Inspection will require the installing electrician or qualified representative to be on site for the inspections listed below in order to de-energize, open and close the equipment for the inspection:

  • Release service change
  • Generators
  • Any inspections related to service equipment after the utility connection is complete

We encourage you to contact your inspector after 7:00 a.m. on the morning of your inspection to arrange a time to meet on site for the inspection. Or, when scheduling your inspection, you may request that the inspector give you a thirty (30) minute call ahead. Please contact Eugene (Tab) Crumpton, Electrical Inspections Supervisor, at (804) 646-5748 with any questions regarding this matter.

The city of Richmond has been recognized as a Gold designee by SolSmart, a national program to assist communities in fostering the growth of strong local solar markets by taking key steps to reduce barriers and make it faster, easier and less expensive to go solar. Find solar specific permit and zoning information at RVAgreen.

To extend an expired permit, please complete and submit an Application for Permit Extension by uploading it to our shared OneDrive folder.