How Do You Get a Permit?

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How to Get a Permit

Permit Cost

Get a Permit

Do You Need a Permit?

How Much Will Your Permit Cost?


The permit process differs for each permit type, and may also vary depending on how complex your project is. These steps are a general guideline to follow to apply for a permit.

Research

Research your property, its zoning requirements, and determine the scope of your project.

NOTICE OF
REASONABLE ACCOMODATIONS FOR
PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES


Persons with Disabilities may request a reasonable accommodation to rules, policies, practices and procedures for the siting, development and use of housing, including housing related services or facilities.

    Start Permit Application

    Visit our Apply for a Permit page to determine the permit type required and guidance about the process for getting your permit.

    Minor Residential Permits

    Licensed contractors registered with Accela and the City of Chula Vista may pull a Minor Residential Permit for an electric meter reset, miscellaneous wiring, water heater replacement, water line repair or alteration, gas meter reset, gas line repair or alteration, installation or replacement of FAU and A/C unit using our online internet program, Citizen Access™.  

    All Other Permits

    • Submit Preliminary Application form with site plan, if desired
    • Review your Application Materials to make sure you have everything you need for a successful permit application.
    • For Planning Permits (e.g. design review, Conditional Use Permit, etc.), please schedule a pre-submittal intake with your assigned project planner.

    Submit Your Permit Application

    Submit your permit application materials and pay all fees due at this time.  Applicants are responsible for submitting complete applications. Incomplete applications will result in plans being rejected for acceptance, or returned to the applicant during the review process.

    TIP: Complete and accurate plan submittals help speed the plan review process. Attention to the completeness and accuracy of information at the beginning of the process generally leads to fewer delays and requests for revisions by City staff. Please ensure that your application includes all of the information necessary for a timely review of your plans.

    All architects, engineers, designers, developers, owners and contractors MUST be familiar with the codes in effect at the time of plan submittal. The Department, as required by State law, CANNOT approve projects that do not comply with the codes in effect at the time of plan submittal.  

    Planning/Land Use Discretionary Permits

    If a Planning/Land Use Discretionary Permit is required, you will need to submit and receive approval of this permit prior to receiving a building permit for any construction activity.  A "discretionary" permit is required for those projects that builders and homeowners cannot do “by right,” but which may be approved depending on the type of application by the Zoning Administrator, the Planning Commission or the City Council. Discretionary projects include lot splits, major subdivisions and conditionally-permitted uses.

    Unless determined to be exempt from CEQA, environmental review pursuant to the provisions of California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is required for all proposed activities requiring discretionary approval by the City, including projects carried out by the City. Prior to taking any action that is subject to environmental review under CEQA, the decision-making body must consider the final environmental document (e.g. categorical exemption, negative declaration, mitigated negative declaration, environmental impact report)  together with any written comments received during the established review and comment period.

    Public Hearing - Processing Goals
     Decision Maker Timeframe

    Zoning Administrator

    8 weeks

    Planning Commission

    16 weeks

    Subdivision Matters

     50 days within acceptance of filing
     

    Building Construction Plan Review and Correctionsbuiding plans

    After your permit application, we review your plans. Plans must be clear and drawn to scale in order to show code compliance. A licensed California architect or engineer may be required to prepare plans.

    Our reviewers may ask for corrections to any errors they find in your application materials.  You will then need to resubmit your plans to address any needed corrections.  

    We review the plans for compliance with applicable Federal, State, and City codes, laws, and ordinances before permits can be issued. As part of the plan review, staff checks zoning for restrictions on use, property line setbacks, and height requirements. We also do a design and historic preservation review, depending on where the project is located. The disciplines involved in reviewing plans:

    • Planning, includes Environmental Services
    • Building
    • Fire
    • Land Development, includes Landscaping
    • Waste Water, if applicable.

    How long will it take to review building construction plans?

    Plan Check Goals (Calendar Days)

    TYPE OF PROJECT

    1st Review

    Recheck

    Plan Change

    Tenant Improvement

    21

    14

    14

    Multi-residential

    28

    14

    14

    Tracts - New Models

    28

    14

    14

    1 and 2 Family Dwelling

    28

    14

    14

    SFD - Remodels/Additions

    21

    14

    14

    SFD - Accessory Structures

    21

    14

    14

    Tracts - Phases

    10

    10

    10

    Solar Photovoltaic Systems (Res. Only)

    10

    10

    10

    New Mobile Home Set-Up Permit (MHP)

    7

    7

    7

    Non City Std. Patio Cover (Res. Only)

    7

    7

    7

    Non City Std. Retaining Walls (Res. Only)

    7

    7

    7

    Non City Std. Fence Walls (Res. Only)

    7

    7

    7

    Patio Enclosures (Residential)

    7

    7

    7

    Over-the-Counter - City Standards

    1

    1

    1

    These are general timeframes. Complete applications can be processed and reviewed more efficiently. Failure to submit all required information may result in your application not being accepted and/or may extend the length of time needed for review.

    Checking your Plan Review Status

    You can check the status of your plan review, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by using our online internet program Citizen Access™.

    Get Your Permit

    1. Pay any outstanding fees to the City (permit and impact fees).
    2. Receive approved plans and permit from each applicable City Department, including Private Site Plan and Waste Water if required.
    3. Comply with the City’s Construction and Demolition Debris Program
    4. All new buildings require verification of water and sewer service in the form of a “will serve” letter from the water district having jurisdiction.
    5. All projects that add habitable square footage require compliance with the applicable School District school fee requirements.
    6. Coordinate and receive approval from all other applicable outside agencies including, but not limited to

      See our Building Permit Requirements Checklist.

      Who can pull building permits?

      Property owners may obtain building permits and complete the work without need for a contractor if the structure or improvement is not intended or offered for sale within one year following construction (referred to as owner-builder permit).  A general contractor may also apply for and obtain a building permit on behalf of a property owner. All contractors must have a valid City of Chula Vista business license in order to perform work in the city. Someone acting as an agent, such as an architect or designer, may apply for an owner-builder permit, but the property owner must still sign an owner-builder disclaimer certificate before the permit is issued.   

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