The Permit Process
Prior to a building being constructed, enlarged, altered, repaired, moved, or demolished a permit is required. The application forms can be found under the commercial and residential links to the left. Before hiring a contractor verify that they have a license and bond from the State of Minnesota. The contractor should pull the required permits for the work that they will be doing. Prior to closing your project, verify that the contractor has scheduled and completed all inspections.
Permits Issued at the Counter
Projects that require a building permit, but can be issued at the time of application are re-roofing, re-siding, and window and/or patio door replacement (no change to existing window or door size). These permits will be processed when you submit your application.
Permits that Require Plan Review
Projects that require a permit application and plans are decks, porches, basement finishes, additions, alterations, and remodels.
Plans must meet the requirements of the Minnesota State Building Code and must be neatly drawn to scale and clearly depict the nature of the work proposed. Examples of information required on plans can be found in our handouts section. Building Department staff members will review those plans for conformance to applicable codes. Plans that do not provide the information and detail necessary to conduct a review will be returned to the applicant for revision.
Plan review for simple residential projects should be completed in 3-5 business days. More complex projects will require longer review periods. If issues arise during the review, they will be identified on the plan or you will be contacted directly for a solution.
Once the review is complete, you will be notified that you can pick up your permit. The permit fee is paid at this time. Once the fee is paid, the permit will be issued and work may proceed.
Commercial projects require plans for building, mechanical, and plumbing permits. Submit an application and plans that provide enough information to clearly identify the work that will be done. All plans must be signed by the design professional. Digital signatures that depict the actual signature are acceptable.
No Permit Required
Some projects that do not require a permit include cosmetic changes such as paint, wall paper, floor covering, cabinets, countertops, tiled backsplash, vanities, trim, baseboard, interior doors, front entry doors where the size will remain the same, screen or storm doors, fences, retaining walls less than 4 feet in height, and sheds less than 200 square feet.
If you are unsure whether you need a permit, contact the Building Department and explain what you will be doing. Department staff will advise you if the work you are doing is regulated and a permit is required.
Permits can be paid for by cash, credit card or check. (NOTE: Please do not email credit card information.)
Refunds will be issued at 80% of the original fee paid provided no inspections have been conducted and must be requested in writing.
In accordance with Minnesota Rules, permits expire within 180 days of issuance if no work is started and no inspections have been called in by the permit holder.
Permits also expire if work has started but then is suspended for more than 180 days and no inspections are called in by the permit holder.
No refunds are available for expired permits.
If your project is taking additional time to complete, either request a progress inspection or an extension of time to complete the work.
Requests for extensions must be in writing and directed to the Building Department.
Commercial and electrical permits are not available through ePermits. All applications and plans (as required) must be submitted to the building department.
ePermits are not available for New Residential Construction
The following work can be applied for online as an ePermit:
- Off peak
Residential – Building
- Reroof – detached garage
- Reroof – Townhouse/Condo Unit w/Sep Entrance
- Reroof – 1 & 2 Family Dwelling
- Reside – 1 & 2 Family Dwelling
- Reside – Detached Garage Only
- Reside – Townhouse/Condo w/ Sep Entrance
Residential – Mechanical
- Air Conditioner
- Furnace and AC
- Gas Piping – Dryer
- Gas Piping – Fireplace
- Gas Piping – Grill
- Gas Piping – Pool
- Gas Piping – Range
- Mech – Garage Unit Heater
- Radiant Floor Heat
- Remodel – HVAC
- Lawn Sprinkler
- Remodel residential
- Water Heater
- Water Softener