In most jurisdictions, building permits are required for any type of residential construction project, large or small. This is to ensure that the project is safe and meets all applicable building codes.
The Town of Mountain View contracts with an independent company, SafeBuilt, to help with new construction, remodeling and development projects in town. This includes applying for building permits.
Homeowners or building contractors considering any new construction or home improvements in Mountain View should seek building code information and permit applications by looking at the town website and by emailing BuildingPermits@tomv.org. Emails sent to this address will be received by the SafeBuilt Permit Technician who handles the town’s building projects.
Directions for what must be submitted to obtain the permit, along with the application form itself, are available on the town website. When the completed items are received by BuildingPermits@tomv.org, a permit will be issued.
A hard stock card is given to the applicant who must post the card in the front window of the property. The card shows the permitted work being done, and is left for the Building Inspector. It must be visible to those walking by.
When the work is complete, and the applicant is ready for the final inspection, the property owner must call the number on the top of the card. The inspector will take the card when the work is completed satisfactorily.
There are a few exceptions to the permit requirement. For example, minor repairs or maintenance work that does not involve any structural changes may not require a permit. However, it is always best to check with BuildingPermits@tomv.org to be certain.
The fee amount will vary depending on the size and scope of the project.
Building permits are an important safety measure that helps to ensure residential construction projects are safe and up to code. With Mountain View’s recent new code enforcement efforts, it is more likely that construction projects will be interrupted if homeowners and contractors do not follow the necessary steps. Interruptions to projects that are already underway can be costly and very frustrating for the homeowner.
Some of the benefits of obtaining a building permit are:
• Safety: Building permits help to ensure that remodel projects are safe and meet all applicable building codes. This can help to prevent accidents and injuries.
• Compliance: Building permits help to ensure that residential construction projects comply with the Town Code. This can help to avoid fines and needing to redo the work which can be costly.
• Value: Building permits can add value to your home. Buyers are more likely to pay a premium for a home that has been built with the proper permits and inspections.
• Peace of mind: Obtaining a building permit can give you peace of mind knowing that your home is built safely and according to code.
If it would be helpful to talk things over with a town employee before or during your permit application process, please feel free to reach out to me. I can direct you to the relevant forms on the website as well as help you find Town Code for your project. Although SafeBuilt’s Permit Technician will be the best resource for this, personal access to local government resources is one of the things we try to provide, and I am always happy to be of assistance to our residents.
David Nugent is the Mountain View Public Works Coordinator.