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Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I obtain a copy of the County of Los Angeles Building Code and Electrical Code?
  • The 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code and the 2005 County of Los Angeles Electrical Code are available from: International Code Council (ICC) 5360 Workman Mill Road Whittier, CA 90601-2298 1-800-423-6587
  • What is a Type V sheet and how do I get one?
  • A Type V sheet is a detail sheet summarizing the "Conventional Light-Frame Construction" requirements specified in Chapter 23 of the Building Code for single story residential construction. Any portion of construction that does not meet the specific requirements of conventional light-frame construction requires engineering. The Type V sheet is an informational tool only and is not intended to be used in lieu of building plans. A copy of a Type V sheet may be found by going to our Forms and Publications page and clicking on the "Building - Handouts" subdirectories.
  • How long is a permit good for?
  • A permit shall expire and become null and void if, 1) The work authorized by the permit is not started within 180 days of the date of permit issuance, or 2) The work is suspended or abandoned at any time after the work is started for a period of 180 days. Before any work can recommence on an expired permit, a new permit will be required and a fee equal to 50% of the original permit fee shall be payable provided the suspension or abandonment has not exceeded one year. If the suspension or abandonment has exceeded one year, a new permit will be required and full permit fees shall be paid.
  • How can I obtain a copy of the codes?
  • The 2007 California Building, Electrical, Plumbing, and Mechanical Codes are available for review at your local Building and Safety district office or they may be purchased from ICC, BNi, or IAPMO. The 2008 County of Los Angeles Building, Electrical, Plumbing, and Mechanical Code amendments to the 2007 California Codes are available by going to our Code Standards and Guidelines page and following the appropriate links. Addresses and hours of operation for each Building and Safety district office and contract city are available on our Local Offices page.
  • What are permit fees based on?
  • Building permit fees are based on the total value of all construction work, as well as all finish work, for which the permit is issued. You may refer to our Fees page for currently adopted fee schedules.
  • Where can I find the original plans for my house?
  • The County of Los Angeles Building Code requires that building plans be retained for a minimum of 90 days from the date of completion of the work covered on the plans. After 90 days, residential plans are typically discarded. The space required to store plans for every house built in the unincorporated county areas makes it prohibitive to keep them. One possible option for finding the as-built plans for any structure is to contact the original builder, designer, and/or engineer. This information can typically be found on the original building permit.
  • I've been told that I don't need permits for buildings that are 120 sq. ft. or less. Is that true?
  • One-story detached accessory buildings used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses and similar uses, provided the gross floor area does not exceed 120 square feet, the height does not exceed 12 feet, and the maximum roof projection does not exceed 24 inches, are exempt from building permits. However, any electrical, plumbing or mechanical equipment installed in these structures do require separate permits. In addition, all structures regardless of size must comply with applicable zoning requirements. Please refer to the Department of Regional Planning website for more information on zoning requirements.
  • How big and how high can I build my house or room addition?
  • Lot coverage, height requirements, yard setbacks, and land use are determined by the County of Los Angeles Zoning Code. Please refer to the Department of Regional Planning website for more information on zoning requirements.
  • How long is a Building application plan check good for?
  • A plan check application submitted to the Building and Safety Division is good for one year following the initial plan check submittal date. If a building permit is not obtained within that time, the plan check will expire. You may request an extension of 180 days by submitting a written request prior to expiration and paying an extension fee equal to 25% of the original plan check fee. A maximum of two extensions may be permitted. Please contact your local district office for further information. Once a plan check and any extensions have expired, the applicant shall resubmit plans and pay a new plan check fee.
  • How do I report a violation (construction without a permit)?
  • You may report a suspected violation in the unincorporated county areas by going to our Report a Violation page or by contacting the local Building and Safety district office. For suspected violations in an incorporated city, please contact the city directly. To determine which district office or city serves you, please refer to our Service Locator.
  • Are there building codes (within Antelope Valley) against homes built from shipping containers? I have been researching this as a way to construct a home from these containers while using solar and/or wind power. I know that there is a company building these in San Fernando Valley but wondered where to start looking for the Antelope Valley for regulations and how "green" a house is allowed.
  • Los Angeles County has policies in place to accept marine cargo containers used for incidental storage with certain agency approvals and container size requirements. However, when marine cargo containers are proposed for construction of a single-family residence or other habitable structure, the containers themselves, their connections, as well as the overall design of the building must all meet the building requirements of the 2008 Los Angeles County Building Code. Because the building code doesn't have specific provisions for marine cargo containers, it may be more challenging to justify their construction and use within your proposed application. A request for approval using Alternate Materials and Methods of Construction, as defined in section 104.2.8, may be required. Regarding "green" construction, the County of Los Angeles encourages sustainable building and has recently implemented its Green Building Ordinance. New single-family construction falls into this ordinance in a number of fashions, including recycling demolition debris and limiting irrigation water waste. Going above and beyond these requirements is certainly allowed, but just as the shipping containers, you will need to comply with all aspects of the Los Angeles County Building, Mechanical, Plumbing, and Electrical Codes. For more information, please contact your local Building and Safety Office and speak with a building plan check engineer. They will be able to assist you with site specific questions. Antelope Valley Building and Safety District Office 335A East Avenue K-6 Lancaster, CA 93535 Phone (661) 723-4440 Fax (661) 723-4435 Thank you for your inquiry.
  • Does a 96 square foot playhouse with a projected square foot area of 120 square feet require a permit? How large can it be? (Unincorperated LA County) Thank You
  • If you reside in the unincorporated Los Angeles County and contract cities, then the following information may apply. If not, please contact your local building and safety department in regards to your question. According to the 2002 Los Angeles County Building Code, Section 106.3, a building permit shall not be required for “one-story detached accessory buildings used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses and similar uses, provided the floor area does not exceed 120 square feet.” However, an electrical, mechanical, and/or plumbing permit(s) may be required. In addition, please contact your local building and safety district office for setback requirements. (A link is provided below for your convenience.)
  • How do I obtain a copy of the County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code and Mechanical Code?
  • The 2002 County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code and the 2002 County of Los Angeles Mechanical Code are available from: International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) 5001 E. Philadelphia Street Ontario, CA 91761-2816 1-800-85-IAPMO
  • We added a family room off our garage without the proper permit and am now in the process of selling this home. I want to include this additional square footage to the total square footage of my home, but understand that it must first be approved. How can I get this approved now?
  • To determine if a permit has been obtained for the addition in question you will need to contact the Building and Safety Field Office serving your area. If you verify that a permit has not been obtained for the addition, you should speak with the office manager who will inform you on what is necessary to legalize the addition. The typical procedure to legalize the existing, un-permitted structure depends on the size and complexity of the addition, this can involve a variety of steps from having an engineer review the existing construction to demolishing and rebuilding portions of the un-permitted addition. Because the addition was originally constructed without the proper permit, it must now meet the requirements of the current codes before it may be permitted. This could involve retrofitting the foundation, walls, or framing to meet the requirements of today's building code requirements. The office manager will be able to guide you through the process in more detail.
  • How do I determine where my property lines are?
  • Building and Safety does not have any information or maps showing the location of property lines. Property lines can only be accurately located by having your property surveyed. For more information, and to verify the license of a surveyor, please refer to the California Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors website.
  • Does L.A. County have any seismic codes requiring owners of pre 1975 concrete tilt up buildings to retrofit said buildings?
  • Chapter 95 of the Los Angeles County Building Code is dedicated to this subject. It applies to concrete tilt-up buildings for which a building permit was issued prior to April 13, 1975. This chapter provides systematic procedures and standards for identification of such buildings, and time periods under which these buildings are required to be structurally analyzed and anchored. Where analysis finds deficiencies, this chapter requires the building to be strengthened or demolished.
  • I am proposing to construct an extension to my existing property, and I was told that I can obtain "Drainage Release Covenants" from my neighbors as an alternate to completing a hydrology study. (The extension will infringe on the "flood fringe" by 6 feet.) Are there standard forms which the County has for such Drainage Release Covenants?
  • Section 110.1 of the Los Angeles County Building Code restricts the placement of buildings in flood hazard areas. This restriction shall not apply when it can be shown provisions are made to protect the building and that the proposed building will not cause any increased flood hazard on adjacent properties. A hydrology study and hydraulic analysis is required to make a determination regarding these provisions. A drainage release covenant is a mechanism, which a developer/applicant may use to obtain permission from an adjacent or adjoining property owner. When a developer/applicant proposes construction that will cause a minor alteration of the existing drainage conditions on an adjacent property, we require the developer/applicant to obtain the property owner's permission in the form of a drainage release covenant. However as indicated above, without a hydrology study or hydraulic analysis the potential increase flood hazard on adjacent properties can not be determined. If you have any further questions regarding this matter, please contact Mr. Mitch Miller, Drainage and Grading Supervisor, Building and Safety Division, at (626) 458-6390.
  • How can I obtain the original plans for my house?
  • State law only requires the County to keep commercial and some multi-family structural plans. The Department therefore only keeps single family residential plans during construction and discards them 90 days after completion of the work. The space required to store all the plans of every house built in the County makes it prohibitive to keep them. Your best hope to find the as-built plans for any structure is to contact the builder, designer, and/or engineer.
  • Is there a way to get a drawing (on-line) of my property that includes the property-lines and my house situated within the property?
  • Presently our records relating to construction on privately owned property are not accessible on the Internet. Basic property dimensions are currently available on the County Assessor website. These maps will not have any representation of the buildings on a property.
  • Can I obtain a copy of the construction plans submitted by the builder for my house?
  • Depending on how long it has been since the plans were submitted, our local District office may still have a copy of the building plans. However, plans for single family residences are not retained permanently by our offices. If they do have a copy of the plans, you would be able to view those plans, but not reproduce them. This is because State law protects the work of architects, similar to copywriting of material by authors. If our office does not have the plans, our staff there should be able to provide you with information about the architect and/or builder. You would then have to contact them directly to see about obtaining a copy of the plans. Plans for single family residential homes are not kept more than 90 days after the completion of construction due to storage limitation restrictions.
  • Can you help me get information on the number of commercial building permits issued in Los Angeles County in 2000 and 2001? Do you have the $ value of the construction?
  • 2000 - 3190 Permits - $296,520,410 2001 - 2544 Permits - $292,696,430 Basis Commercial Building Permits (no MEP, no other type) Unincorporated Area only Calendar Year
  • I live in the unicorporated area of Monrovia and would like to build a block wall 6 feet high. Do I need a permit for this?
  • In the unincorporated Los Angeles County area, a freestanding fence or block wall may be constructed up to a height of six (6') feet without a permit. However, the Dept. of Regional Planning does have some restrictions on where that can be done. To completely answer your question, it would be necessary for a Regional Planning representative to review the layout of your property (site plan) with you. I would suggest that you contact our San Gabriel Valley District office at 626.574.0941. There is a representative from Regional Planning that periodically visits that office and would be able to provide answers specific to your property.
  • What type of permit(s) are needed for a swimming pool in the County?
  • Permits are required for all of the work necessary to build a swimming pool. In LA County, there are two ways to approach the required permits. The first, and most popular, option is to obtain a Combination Swimming Pool Permit. This Combination permit covers the construction of the swimming pool as well as the electrical, plumbing, and mechanical work directly related to the construction of the swimming pool. The other option is to obtain separate Building, Electrical, Plumbing, and Mechanical Permits for the work covered by each of these permits. The net result is the same either way, with the Combination permit being offered to reduce the amount of paperwork required of the applicant.
  • I am considering building a concrete wall between my house and my neighbor's. What are the necessary procedures? Do I need to obtain a permit? If so, what are the building rules & regulations necessary to obtain a permit? Do I need to have a survey for the site? How is the cost determined by two parties?
  • In the unincorporated Los Angeles County area, a freestanding fence or block wall may be constructed up to a height of six (6?) feet without a permit. However, if the wall is to retain any soil, a permit may be necessary. The Department of Regional Planning has some restrictions on where and how high a wall can be built. To completely answer your question, it would be necessary for a Regional Planning representative to review the layout of your property (site plan) with you. I would suggest that you contact our closest District office and they can advise you where this can best be done. There is a representative from Regional Planning that periodically visits many of our offices and would be able to provide answers specific to your property. A survey of your property would generally not be required. If there is some dispute as to where the property lines are, you would probably be well advised to have a survey done. The matter of dividing and sharing the cost of the new wall is entirely up to you and your neighbor(s). How you share any costs is not regulated by the Building & Safety Division.
  • Is construction of a detached wood frame garage generally permitted within an Earthquake Fault Zone Non-Structural Setback Zone?
  • While most construction is restricted in an earthquake fault zone, Section 113.5 of the Los Angeles County Building Code does provide an exception for one-story, light-frame buildings not exceeding 1,000 sq. ft. in area or 12 ft. in height, and not for human habitation.
  • What is an ICC (formerly ICBO) Certificate, and how can I obtain one?
  • For information on the ICC Certificate, please contact International Code Council (ICC) at (800) 423-6587 or visit ICC's internet site by clicking on the link below:
  • Can a person check for Los Angeles County permits via the Internet?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. We are currently in the process of upgrading and launching a new database with interactive capabilities. However, at this time, the information is not currently available via the Internet. If a property you are interested in is located in the Lancaster area, you may contact the Building and Safety Division's Lancaster District Field Office at the address and phone number shown below. Permit information is public information and may be viewed at the office at your convenience. Thank you. Lancaster District Field Office 335A East Avenue K-6 Lancaster, CA 93535 (661) 723-4440
  • In addition to the items listed below, what will be needed at the time of filing an application for a permit for a 6 stall breezeway/shedrow horse barn. 1. Plot plan approval (2 sets) 2. Engineered Structural calculations (2 sets) 3. Engineered drawings (2 sets)
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. At the time of plan submittal, the only item you will need in addition to those you have listed is a check for the plancheck amount. You may determine the fee for plancheck by contacting the Building and Safety Division's Antelope Valley District Field Office at the address and phone number below. Please note that there may be additional requirements and agency approvals that are needed prior to issuance of a permit, however, these items are not required at the time of plan submittal. Antelope Valley District Field Office 335A East Avenue K-6 Lancaster, CA 93535 (661) 723-4440
  • I am planning to convert a closet into a bathroom and add a small addition to my house (about 400 square feet). Do I need a building permit, and if so, what is the procedure to obtain one?
  • Yes, you do need permits (building, plumbing, electrical, and possibly mechanical) to modify a room or build an addition to your home. The permits may be obtained from the Building and Safety District office which serves your area. For a list of LA County Building and Safety Offices, please visit http://ladpw.org/general/facilities/app_building.cfm where all of the addresses and phone numbers of field offices are available. The process of obtaining permits for this type of work is relatively simple. One of our plancheck engineers will do a review of your plans, which normally can be accomplished while you are completing the permit applications (a 15-30 minute process at the Building and Safety District Field Office). Once the plans are approved and permits obtained, you may begin construction. There will be required inspections at certain intervals during the construction. The office staff can advise you as to when these will need to occur.
  • I am planning to add a small addition to my house (about 400 square feet). Do I need professionally drafted plan or can I draw one as the owner? About how long would it take to obtain a permit?
  • Due to the small scope of your project and assuming it is your home, you would not need plans prepared by a licensed engineer or architect under most circumstances. However, we would need drawings with sufficient detail to be able to confirm that the room size, ceiling height, and other requirements can be met. You may visit our website at http://www.ladpw.org/general/forms/download/787.pdf?CFID=5244389&CFTOKEN=56173609 for minimum requirements for plan submittal to get an idea of the information we will be looking for on the plans. The process of obtaining permits for this work is relatively simple. We will do a review of your plans, which normally can be accomplished while you are completing the permit applications (a 15-30 minute process at the Building and Safety District Field Office). If the project is more complicated, our engineers will need to take in the plans for a thorough review, that could take up to two weeks. Once the plans are approved and permits obtained, you may begin construction. There will be required inspections at certain intervals during the construction. The office staff can advise you as to when these will need to occur.
  • A few weeks ago, I was able to find a listing online of the requirements for a building permit such as what size building does and doesn't require a building permit. During the last few days, I have been unable to refind this info. If this info is still available online, please provide the link info.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Our Building and Safety Division has recently posted a large number of documents on the Internet. You may find this information by visiting www.ladpw.org and searching our 'Forms' in the top right portion of the screen. By typing 'minimum' in the search field, you will find the minimum plan submittal requirements for obtaining a building permit. A large quantity of other information is available by searching these documents using a keyword search. If you are not able to find specific information, please contact your local Building and Safety District Field Office shown at the link provided below. Thank you.
  • What are the rear and side required setbacks as well as required rear yard open area and any relevant building plans requirements for room addition?
  • The Department of Regional Planning governs setback requirements for unincorporated Los Angeles County areas. They may be contacted via the web link below. For a room addition, you may view the minimum requirements by visiting the 'Minimum Requirements' link below and typing "Residential Minimum Requirements" in the search field. A .PDF file will open showing all of the requirements for construction in the Los Angeles County area.
  • Do I need a permit to put a fense around my house?
  • If you live in an unincorporated area in of Los Angeles County, a building permit is not required to construct a fence less than 6'0" in height. However, depending on the location of the fence (front yard, side yard, or back yard), you may need to obtain approval from the Department of Regional Planning. We have provided a link to their web site below for your convenience. If you live within an incorporated city you should check with your city's planning department.
  • How many yard sales are permitted for residents of this area? (Avocado Heights, Citrus Heights)
  • Yard sales in unincorporated L.A. County area are regulated by the Department of Regional Planning. Section 22.20.065, subsection C of Los Angeles County Title 22 Zoning Code states: "A maximum of two personal property sales, each not exceeding three consecutive days, may be conducted at any site in any 12-month period." Note that 'personal property sale' includes "a yard sale, garage sale or similar event at a residence"
  • Looking for "structural observation program and designation of the structural observer" form to place on construction plans per plan checker request.
  • The forms you have requested are available on our Internet site at the link shown below. Simply type "Structural" in the search field and the forms you are requesting will appear. You may print them using any version of Adobe Acrobat.
  • Do you have your rough grading certification and precise grading certification forms on your website?
  • Yes we do! Please visit the web link below and type in 'grading' for the keyword. Click search. The forms you are looking for are titled 'ENGINEERED GRADING CONSULTANT STATEMENT' and 'ENGINEERED/REGULAR GRADING CONTRACTORS STATEMENT'. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I plan to build a 3 feet high free-standing block wall in my backyard along my property line. However, the block wall will be situated along the edge of a downward slope of about 10 feet high. Do I need to get a permit for building this block wall?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. You may need to obtain a permit for the construction of the wall you have described due to its location adjacent to a slope. Please visit your Building and Safety Division's local District Field Office (see link below) and ask to speak with a plan check engineer. She or he will be able to further assist you, and if you do not need a permit, explain the requirements for the footing for the wall located on/near a slope. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I am looking for the standards on a full set of construction documents. I also need updated information for building codes for those projects (residential) to be built in the flight zone of LAX. I am looking at adding 1200 to 1800 s.f. to my existing home and remodeling the interior of the existing. I plan on undertaking this project as owner operator.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. There are a number of requirements, mostly related to sound insulation and construction design techniques that must be incorporated into residential design in the flight zone area you have described. You will need to contact the Building and Safety Division's Firestone District Field Office at the address shown below to obtain the details for construction. With respect to the design, a homeowner may design his or her own home, under the condition that it is of conventional construction. A plan check engineer at the Firestone office can explain to you the details of conventional construction. However, if the addition/remodel is considered to be non-conventional, you may be required to hire a licensed architect or engineer to work with you on the design and calculations. Please feel free to address further detailed questions to our professional building plan check engineers at out Firestone district office. Thank you. Building and Safety Division Firestone District Field Office 7807 S. Compton Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90001 323-586-6541
  • I purchased a home that has unpermitted additions and conversions. Is there a such thing as "as is" permits since I have no information on who built them. Can/will the city fine me for having these unpermitted conversion/additions on my property? Is tearing them down mandatory?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. If your property is located in the unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles, the following information will apply to you. If your property is located in the City of Los Angeles, please visit the City of L.A. Building and Safety site below for correct information. The typical procedure that is followed when this type of construction is encountered is to legalize the existing, un-permitted structure. Depending on the size and complexity of the addition, this can involve a variety of steps from having an engineer review the existing construction to demolishing and rebuilding portions of the un-permitted addition. Your first step in this process, and to determine what additional steps will be necessary to legalize the addition, is to contact the office manager of our Building and Safety Division's Lomita District Field Office. You should explain the situation to the manager and make an appointment for a building inspector to visit the property and take a preliminary look at the addition. Finally, because the addition was constructed without permits, when it is permitted now, it must meet the requirements of the current codes. This could potentially involve retrofitting the foundation, walls, or framing to meet the requirements of today's building code requirements. The office manager will be able to guide you through the process in more detail at each step of the way. Thank you for your inquiry. County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division Lomita District Field Office 24320 S. Narbonne Ave. Lomita, CA 90717 310-534-3760
  • My neighbor is building a playhouse that is about 12 feet tall with posts anchored in concrete. The Playhouse is set back from my back yard fence approximately 2 feet (23 inches) from my property line/fence. Is there a minimum set back for this kind of construction? Did they need a permit? Do I have any recourse if this is not to code?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Depending on the size of the playhouse, a building permit may be required for its construction. Based on the zip code provided in your inquiry, you may contact our Building and Safety Division's Calabasas District Field for more specific requirements. In addition, the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning has some minor language on the construction of such accessory buildings as you have described. You may contact them if you wish at the web link provided below. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • 1 Which Plumbing Code is now in effect and for how long ? 2 I haven't worked in LA County in a few years and need to come to the counter and ask s few questions to the mechanical plan checker, I need help sizing a water system for an up coming job, my question is : Can I get help over the counter and where ?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. The Building and Safety Division and its professional personnel are capable of assisting you with your questions. We are currently using the 2002 County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code; which is based on the 2001 State of California Plumbing Code; which in turn is based on the 2000 Uniform Plumbing Code. Please note that the applicable provisions shall come from the Los Angeles County amended Plumbing Code and that our plan check engineers and inspectors use this code for enforcement purposes. With respect to the assistance we can provide at the counter, you may visit our Alhambra headquarters office at 900 S. Fremont Ave, Alhambra CA 91803 (3rd Floor, Building and Safety Division) for questions relating to the Building, Plumbing, Mechanical, and Electrical codes. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I live in an un-incorporated part of L.A. county. Am I allowed to have live chickens as pets? If so, where can I get information about how many chickens I can have, if a permit is required, and any other information related to owning chickens?
  • The County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works does not regulate keeping of pets. Please contact the Los Angeles County Department of Regional Planning at the website and contact information provided below. Thank you. Department of Regional Planning 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411 Fax: (213) 626-0434 TDD: (213) 617-2292
  • HOW MUCH SPACE IS REQUIRED BETWEEN A HOUSE AND THE REAR BOUNDARY OF THE PROPERTY? DOES IT MATTER IF SOME OF THAT SPACE IS USED AS A ROAD TO ACCESS ADJACENT PROPERTY?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Property line and specifically setback regulations are handled through the L.A. County Department of Regional Planning. We have provided a link to their website below for your convenience. Alternatively, you may visit the regional planning representative Monday through Friday at the Building and Safety District Field Office shown below. We recommend you call for an appointment. Thank you for your inquiry. Calabasas District Field Office 4111 N. Las Virgenes Rd. Calabasas, CA 91302 (818) 880-4150
  • If someone purchases a home in Altadena and wishes to make improvements, including additional space, what are the basic limitations on adding new square footage? I believe that in Pasadena, the maximum lot coverage is around 35%. Also, would a basement count as lot coverage if it also serves as a footing for new living space?
  • Maximum lot coverage is determined by the L.A. County Department of Regional Planning for those homes located in unincorporated L.A. County areas. If your property is located within the City of Pasadena, you will need to contact the City for lot coverage requirements. We have provided a link below to the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning home page for your convenience. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • We want to build a two car garage in the front of our house. 1.What are the setback requirements from street and side property line, size & height limits, and other restrictions we need to know? 2. Where do we get permits, and which ones do we need? 3. Is there a way to determine our property lines without having to hire a surveyor?
  • 1.Setbacks are determined by the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning. We have provided a link to their website below for your convenience. 2.You will need a building permit and an electrical permit at a minimum. The fees for these permits are dependent on the amount of work being done (valuation) and the number of fixtures installed. The permits may be obtained at the Building and Safety District Field Office location shown below. 3.The Department of Regional Planning will be able to assist you in detail with property line information. It is unlikely that you will need to hire a surveyor. A Regional Planning representative is also available at the Building and Safety office shown below on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. We recommend you call to make an appointment. San Gabriel Valley District Field Office 125 S. Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007 626-574-0941
  • I reside in North San Gabriel under the County unincorporate area. The property's lot size is about 55ft x 150ft. It's a one-story house. I would like to tear it down completely, and build a two-story with about 2500 sq ft. Please advice the contact information and the proper procedures on how to acquire the construction approval from the County.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. There are a number of agencies and departments within the county that you will need to obtain approval from before receiving a permit to build a new house. We recommend you visit our Building and Safety Division's local district field office to find detailed information regarding the requirements of, and contact information for these agencies and departments. Given your location, the office that can serve you is located at 125 S. Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007 - (626) 574-0941. Other district office locations may be found on the website at the link shown below. As a basic summary, you will need to obtain approvals from the Department of Regional Planning, the local school district, the Air Quality Management District, the Division of Building and Safety, and the Fire Department to name a few. When visiting your friendly Building and Safety District Field Office, ask a plan check engineer to explain the details of obtaining approvals and permits for the work you have described. He or she will be able to assist you by explaining the process in detail, and by providing some helpful handouts. The Building and Safety Office hours are 8:00 - 4:30, Monday through Friday. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • Concerning a 8'X16'storage shed, can you tell me what the setback is for a shed from the property line/fence? Also, what is the procedure to obtain permission to have the shed under an Oak tree? I've been told that the shed can not be under the drip area of the tree and I would need permission to build a shed under the tree.
  • An 8'x16' accessory building requires a building permit from the Department of Public Works, Building and Safety Division. Approval from the Department of Regional Planning is required to obtain the building permit. Please contact the District field office below to make an appointment to meet a Regional Planning representative to discuss the setback requirements from property lines and oak trees for the construction of your accessory building. San Gabriel Valley District Field Office 125 S. Baldwin Avenue Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574-0941
  • I live in the second house of a 4 house private street. We all share a common driveway. My neighbor at the above address built a 7-8 foot concrete wall dividing our properties. It has created a huge blind spot for the back 3 houses. Is there a height limit? Also, my understanding is that this wall is called a return wall. It ends at my garage wall and turns in onto my property and meets my garage. At the other end of my garage, a 3 ft. wall existed. This wall was extended up to approx. 7 feet and another return wall meets the back end of my garage wall. I have no access to my garage wall or the full perimeter of my property. It is now a part of my neighbors back yard. Is a permit required for this? What can be done to regain access to the full perimeter of my property. Also, this wall was built on the 3 gas lines of the back houses including mine. How can I find out that this wall was built correctly on top of our gas lines? Thank you.
  • In the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County a freestanding fence or block wall may be constructed up to a height of six (6) feet without a permit. Therefore, a 7-8 foot concrete wall requires a permit and inspection from the Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division. Also, the Department of Regional Planning does have restrictions on the location and height of fences. Please contact the District field office below to speak to a Regional Planning representative regarding the specifics of your property. The Los Angeles County plumbing code does not restrict the construction of a concrete fence over gas lines, but if the lines mentioned are upstream of the service meter please contact the Gas Company to verify the installation satisfies their requirements. San Gabriel Valley District Field Office 125 S. Baldwin Avenue Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574-0941
  • I'm looking to develope the property at the above intersection. I can't develope this property because, there is no water that goes to the property. I applied for a USAD loan, but was turned down soley because of this water proplem. I need help. Who can I go to?
  • The County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code does require that each plumbing fixture shall be provided with an adequate supply of potable running water. Potable water is defined as water which is satisfactory for drinking, culinary, and domestic purposes and meets the requirements of the health authority having jurisdiction. The local water company should be contacted to extend the local water service to your property. Please contact the Antelope Valley District Office at (661) 723 4440 to identify the water purveyor in your area. If service from the local water company is not feasible the Department of Health Services Environmental Health Division should be contacted at (626) 430-5380 to obtain information regarding well water to serve the property. Antelope Valley Office 335A E. Avenue K-6, Lancaster 93535 Phone: (661) 723-4440 Fax: (661) 723-4435
  • I would like a copy of Table 4-1 from the Los Angeles County Plumbing Code. Where can I find this?
  • Table 4-1 is available for your review over the counter at any of the Department of Public Works Building and Safety District Offices. The 2002 Los Angeles County Plumbing Code is based on the 2001 California Plumbing Code which is available for sale from the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO). The link below will give you access to the publications department.
  • My neighbor has diverted drainage from the hillside above their house. The drainage water originally flowed down their hillside. Their drainage channel now empties onto my property running across my upper driveway, which is dirt. The water has eroded a ditch, which is now more than a foot deep. Aren't they responsible for making sure that this diverted runoff water does not cause erosion on my property? In addition, it is beginning to undermine a public road.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Please contact the regional drainage engineer available at the Building and Safety Field Office serving your area. The drainage engineer can assist you with the regulations for water flow across property lines and your options for protecting your property.A link is provided below to identify the locations of our Field Offices.
  • I'm considering remodeling my kitchen which will include new cabinets, new appliances, flooring, some electrical, a range hood and homemade cabinets. It may also possibly including removing a load-bearing wall and replacing it with a beam. What permits will I need, and do I need a structural engineer to evaluate the beam before installation? Do I need approval before putting the beam in? Lastly, are there any restrictions on homemade cabinets regarding types of finishes?
  • The scope of work you mentioned will require building, mechanical, and electrical permits. Please contact a plan check engineer at the San Gabriel District Office indicated below for specific details of the required structural analysis to obtain the building permit. Also, the District Office can provide you with an informative handout that explains the permitting process titled One- and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Ave. Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574- 0941
  • I have a question. If someone wants to build in L.A. County, do they my code and law, must have a L.A. County address? This question pertains to someone wishing to build in L.A. County, but using a Ventura County address. This is a County Line question.
  • Please contact the Building and Safety Calabasas District Office at the address provided below to determine which jurisdiction will process your permit. An administrative agreement may be required between the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works and the administrative authority of Ventura County. Calabasas District Field Office 4111 North Las Virgenes Road Calabasas, 91302 (818) 880 4150
  • I am researching recorded property lines with regards to a disputed fence installation by the developer. Is this information now available to me and how do I obtain it?
  • If the fence was a Regional Planning requirement the approved grading plans might show the wall or fence relative to the property line. Approved grading plans for your area are available at the Santa Clarita District Office at the address provided below. Otherwise, it is recommended that you obtain the services of a licensed land surveyor to locate the property line. Santa Clarita District Field Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Valencia (661) 222 2940
  • My neighbor built a storage shed attaching to my detached garage and it encroaches 2 ft into my property line, what can I do?
  • If your property is located in the unincorporated area of Los Angeles county please contact the San Gabriel Valley District Office below and speak to the code enforcement representative to discuss your lot encroachment matter. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Ave. Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574- 0941
  • Are permits required to build a backyard bbq island with a pergola covering it? pergola is free standing. what are the footing requirements?
  • A building permit is required for a detached accessory building exceeding 120 square feet. The Santa Clarita District Office can provide you with an informative handout that explains the permitting process titled One- and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements which includes structural details for typical construction. Also, a plumbing permit is required for any gas piping proposed, the plumbing code requires the installation of gas piping under such structures to be installed in a gastight conduit. Please contact the district office below for more information regarding your project. Santa Clarita District Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Valencia (661) 222-2940
  • Do I need a permit to build a front yard fence with a drive way entrance fence, made of wrought iron and stucco/brick poles, with an intended height of 48 to 52"? I have little kids and would like to close the open front yard/drive way for security reasons, ASAP. Please confirm. Thank you,
  • A permit from Building and Safety is not required for freestanding fences up to 6 feet, but the Department of Regional Planning does limit the height of fences in the required 20 foot front yard clearance. Please contact the regional planning representative at the district office below for more information regarding the zoning requirements for your project or call (213) 974-6411. Any proposed electrical permits can be obtained at the Building and Safety District Office indicated below. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Ave. Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574- 0941
  • Can a property get a building permit with a well on another parcel a block away ( Approx. 2,000 feet or more)on private property?
  • The water service proposed would not be allowed per section 609.7 of the County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code if more than one lot must be crossed, only adjoining lots may be served by a well with proper cause and legal easement and approvals from the Department of Regional Planning and the Department of Health Services.
  • When is a geotechnical report required in the unincorporated area of LA County? What triggers the requirement? Steepness? Fill? Scope of work? Would a Geo report be required to partially rebuild a fire damaged structure on a 1940's era filled pad? Thanks, R.
  • Typically the need for a geotechnical report is determined by the building plan checker reviewing the project. Soils in areas of questionable stability that are prone to landslides, liquefaction, and all hillsides require a geotechnical report. Please contact the Building and Safety Office indicated below for more information regarding the specific requirements for your project. Santa Clarita District Field Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Valencia (661) 222 2940
  • What is section 609.7 of the Los Angeles County Plumbing Code and what does it say -- I can't seem to find it on the web
  • Section 609 of the County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code addresses the installation, testing and location of water piping that is regulated by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works having jurisdiction in the area of the installation. The plumbing code is available for review over the counter at any Building and Safety District Office. Below is a link for the location of all district offices. The 2002 County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code is available for sale from the following organization: International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) 5001 E. Philadelphia Street Ontario, CA 91761-2816 1-800-85-IAPMO
  • Are copies of permit records for properties (in the unincorporated Los Angeles County area) from the Building and Safety District Field Office in Arcadia available by mail, and what is the fee?
  • Public information can be reviewed at the Building and Safety District Office indicated below for the unincorporated areas of the San Gabriel Valley region only. Copies of permit records are available for a nominal fee, but requests must be made in person at the district office. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Ave. Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574- 0941
  • Can I get permit to build a house on vacant land?
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning for answers to your land use and zoning questions. A link is provided below for your convenience. Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411
  • My client is searching for a office/warehouse/manufacturing building. They manufacture aftermarket motorcycle parts. In the fabrication process they use the following machines: CNC machines, tig & mig welding, punch presses (over 20 ton rating) metal grinding and polishing (with dust collector.) They were presented with this building and told that is was in a M1.5 Zone. I am familiar with M1 Zone in the City of Los Angeles and have a have a print out of the regulations from their (City of L.A.) website. But I am not familiar with L.A. County zone regulations. Is there a list I can print out from your website or a list I can review in order to direct my client.
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning for answers to your zoning questions. A link is provided below for your convenience. Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411
  • I am wanting to build on property that is 5 lots side by side and that are sub-sized. How do I reposition the property lines so instead of now having 5 lots there will be 4 lots that would be then sized to be able to build wider housing?
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning for answers to your zoning questions. A link is provided below for your convenience. Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411
  • A neighbor up the street installed an aluminum garage on their property. In the windstorm last month it partially blew over. It is still sitting there in disrepair. Is such a type of structure legal?
  • Please contact the Building and Safety San Gabriel Valley District Office at (626) 574-0941 and ask to speak to the Code Enforcement representative regarding this structure. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Ave. Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574- 0941
  • My buyer's home inspector says the water heater in my garage needs a down spout from the pressure relief valve. Where does this downspout need to terminate to be up to building code? The hardware store salesman suggests that we use flexible copper braided hose that terminates a few inches above the garage floor. The inspector states it has to drain to the outside of the house which does not seem practical. Please help.
  • Section 608.4 of the County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code requires that the drain of a combination pressure and temperature relief valve located inside of a building shall extend from the valve to the outside of the building with the end of the pipe not more than two (2) feet nor less than six (6) inches above the ground (or the flood level of the area receiving the discharge) and pointing downward. Also, no part of such drain shall be trapped. The materials allowed for a relief valve drain include galvanized steel, hard drawn copper piping and fittings or listed relief valve drain tube with fittings which will not reduce the internal bore of the pipe or tubing (straight lengths). You may review the code over the counter at the Building and Safety Calabasas District Office located at 4111 Las Virgenes Road, Calabasas.
  • Are there any specific foundation underpinning requirements for a two story addition on an existing 12" footing.
  • 1)Buildings in certain areas of Los Angeles County are regulated by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works (DPW). The address you provided is an incorporated area not served by the Los Angeles County DPW Building and Safety Division. Therefore, your question should be submitted to the City of Santa Clarita. 2)The underpinning application you are referring to is a common methodology to reinforce existing footings supporting a second story. However, in areas served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works the County of Los Angeles Building Code (LACBC) has no provisions or details for such construction and the LACBC requires a structural design and details to be provided by a licensed civil/structural engineer or a licensed architect in the State of California.
  • Upon doing a large room addition can I install a kitchenette. Or is it permited to build a quest house on the property for my mother to stay in?
  • It is recommended that you contact the Building and Safety District Office serving your area to verify when the Regional Planning representative will be available to answer your questions regarding a guest unit. Links for the County of Los Angeles Building and Safety District Office locations and the Department of Regional Planning are provided below for your convenience.
  • I would like to change my old Aluminum frame single glass to a double glazed glass Retro-Fit. Do I have to obtain a building permit? As someone said, we don't need to have a permit if we have not changed the frame. With Retro-Fit windows, we keep the old windows frame. Is that truth?? Thank you for your answering.
  • In areas served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division a building permit would be required for a window replacement as described. Please contact the Building and Safety District Office serving your area. A link to the County of Los Angeles Building and Safety District Office locations is provided below.
  • 1) What does the LADPW require for deputy inspectors to work, re: certifications, project registration, fees, etc.? 2) Do the same requirements apply to all ladpw.org offices listed, district AND contract city? 3) Do contract cities have additional city requirements?
  • Deputy inspectors may serve any area served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division including the contract cities. There are four (4) deputy inspector certifications: reinforced concrete, structural masonry, pre-stressed concrete, structural steel and welding. A person with the following qualifications may apply with the County of Los Angeles for certification as a deputy inspector in a particular discipline: 1)Current International Code Council (ICC) certification in the discipline. 2)One (1) year of inspection experience in the discipline. 3)Three (3) years of work experience in the discipline. 4)Three (3) reference letters with knowledge of inspection in the discipline. Fees and application information can be obtained by calling (626) 458 3176.
  • I'm looking for the form with title: Title 26 Chapter 67 Securit Requirements Plan Check Correction Sheet and can not find it on your site. Rev on my form says 9/28/99. Please let me know if you guys still have this form via internet. thanks!
  • The Security Requirements Correction Sheet is available online. Online forms can be found by using the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works search function at www.ladpw.org by clicking on forms from the drop-down menu. Below is a direct link to the form you requested.
  • I want to put paving on private dirt road and build a house in an unicorporated area of the county, the area does not have power or sewers. How would I find out the process to legally pave and build a house and put in a septic system, if power is not financially accessable can I build the house and use a propane generator instead of hooking up to Edison power over 1 mile away?
  • Zoning information may be obtained by contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411. Telephone hours are 7:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Thursday. Public counter hours are 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Although not required, you may wish to schedule a "One Stop" counseling appointment in order to obtain additional information from representatives of the Department of Public Works, the Fire Department and Regional Planning staff. You may schedule a "One Stop" appointment by calling (213) 974-6438. One Stop" meetings are held at the Department of Regional Planning, 320 West Temple, 13th Floor, Los Angeles.
  • Hello, I am a resident of Val Verde, California. We recently had some very severe flooding that caused mudslides and other damage. I have mud that is three feet deep piled against the back of my house. I have many questions such as are there people who will help me get my house out of the mud?? Where do I put the dirt if I am lucky enough to find people to help me?? etc... Any help you could give me would be very appreciated! Thank you.
  • Please contact the Santa Clarita District Office indicated below and request an inspection to determine if the condition must be referred to the Geotechnical Engineering Division of the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. If the soil moved will remain on your lot please contact the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer located at the Santa Clarita District Office to verify the requirements for any proposed grading and to answer questions. Also, for your information a link is provided to a homeowner's guide for flood, debris, and erosion control Santa Clarita District Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Valencia, CA (661) 222 2940
  • I wish to protect the cars in my driveway during the summer heat an inclimate weather. I understand there is a 20-foot setback to the front of a structure, but does this also apply to an aluminum/steel carport with open sides? Thank you for your time.
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning regarding zoning issues for the structure proposed. A link to the Department of Regional Planning is provided below for your convenience. You may also contact a regional planning representative at the local County District Office, a link is provided below for locations of field offices.
  • What the owner needs: Platt map showing septic tank and leech line location. Filed by builder to get building/Septic system permit. This is required to get permit and Health Dept. approval to replace the septit tank. I am the Realtor and agent for the owner. Thank you.
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Health Services administrative headquarters to obtain available archived information of approved private sewage disposal systems. County of Los Angeles Department of Health Services Environmental Health 5050 Commerce Drive Baldwin Park, California 91706 (626) 430 5380
  • For a project that will be submittted for a permit, what is the applicable building code and model code?
  • The current building code in areas served by the County of Los Angeles Building and Safety Division is the 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code that is based on the 2001 California Building Code. The model code is the 1997 Uniform Building Code published by the International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO).
  • Do I need to provid gas auto shut-off valve before on the market? Which city or county required gas auto shut-off valve? Thanks
  • The 2002 County of Los Angeles Mechanical Code requires an automatic gas shut off to be interconnected to any required fire-extinguishing systems protecting grease hoods and ducts. Only the fuel supply to the equipment under the grease hood is required to have an automatic gas shut off valve. Seismic gas shut off valves are not required by the 2002 County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code, but earthquake actuated gas shut off valves may be required by jurisdictions not served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works.
  • 1. building set backs all property lines 2. min square footage lot size to build home 3. contact numbers
  • Zoning information may be obtained by contacting the Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411. Telephone hours are 7:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Thursday. Public counter hours are 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Although not required, you may wish to schedule a "One Stop" counseling appointment in order to obtain additional information from representatives of the Department of Public Works, the Fire Department and Regional Planning staff. You may schedule a "One Stop" appointment by calling (213) 974-6438. One Stop" meetings are held at the Department of Regional Planning, 320 West Temple Street, Los Angeles.
  • I have a guy who is putting in a sliding door. Does he need T-24 Energy Calcs? If so, is there a simple form for meeting Package D requirements or does the project need to be modeled by computer?
  • Alterations that add fenestration area do not require energy calculations if the fenestration product (i.e. sliding glass door) has a maximum .75 U-factor and meets the Solar Heat Gain Coefficient requirement of the Alternative Component Package D for the respective climate zone. Compliance can be documented on a Certificate of Compliance form CF-1R, a link is provided below for your convenience.
  • I received a Notice of Violation for addition and alteration to 2nd dwelling unit above garage. I've been requested to submit plans for the cited work. Is it possible for me to get plans for this addition that has already been completed and is it acceptable?
  • Please contact the Lomita Building and Safety District Field Office at the address shown below and ask to speak with the office manager who will inform you on what is necessary to legalize the work. Please note that un-permitted work cannot be considered acceptable unless construction plans are approved, and the work is permitted and inspected by the Building and Safety Division of the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. The typical procedure to legalize an existing, un-permitted addition depends on the size and complexity of the addition, this can involve a variety of steps from having an engineer review the addition to demolishing and rebuilding portions of the addition. Because the addition was constructed without permits, if it is permitted now it must meet the requirements of the current codes. This could involve retrofitting the foundation, walls, or framing to meet current building code requirements. The office manager will be able to explain the process in more detail. County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division Lomita District Field Office 24320 South Narbonne Ave Lomita, CA (310)534 3760
  • Firstly: Does one need a permit to cut steps into a slope on one's property, i.e. with RR ties and gravel fill, in order to more easily access nearby hiking trails? Secondly: Do steps like these have to remain within the 10,000 sq. ft. 'building footprint' as possibly required by this part of the county?
  • The County of Los Angeles Building Code does not require a grading permit under the following conditions: An excavation that (1) is less than 2 feet (610 mm) in depth or (2) does not create a cut slope greater than 5 feet (1524 mm) in height and steeper than 1 unit vertical in 2 units horizontal (50% slope) and does not exceed 50 cubic yards (38.3M3). A fill not intended to support structures and which does not obstruct a drainage course if such fill (a) is placed on natural grade that has a slope not steeper than five horizontal to one vertical and is less than 1 foot (305 mm) deep, or (b) is less than 3 feet (914 mm) in depth at its deepest point, measured vertically upward from natural grade to the surface of the fill, and does not exceed 50 cubic yards (38.2 m3), or (c) does not exceed 20 cubic yards (15.3 m3)on any one lot. Without knowing the extent of the proposed stairs and topography, it is very difficult to determine if a permit is required. Prior to construction it is recommended you contact the local Building and Safety Office and discuss your project in more detail with the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer. In addition to a grading permit other requirements by other agencies may be applicable; these include Zoning, Fish & Game, and Coastal. Information on the other Agencies which may regulate the construction of the stairs, is also available at the Building and Safety District Office.
  • WHAT PERMITS WOULD I NEED TO BUILD A NEW HOUSE? WHAT ARE THE ESTIMATED COST FOR THESE PERMITS? DO I SUBMIT THE BUILDING PLANS WITH THE PERMIT APPLICATIONS OR AT SOME TIME AFTER? HOW LONG DOES IT USUALLY TAKE FOR BUILDING PERMITS TO BE PROCESSED AND APPROVED?
  • Building, electrical, plumbing and mechanical permits are required to build a new house, and depending on the scope of work a grading permit may also be required. An estimated cost cannot be provided since the fees are based on the valuation of the proposed work. The plan check fees are calculated and due at the time of the building permit application, and the permit fees are calculated and due before issuance of the required permits. The building plans should be submitted with the building permit application, thereafter the initial plan review should be complete in two weeks. The County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works recommends that you begin the home building process by contacting the East Los Angeles Building and Safety Division District Field Office at the address and phone number indicated below. By speaking with a plan check engineer at the East Los Angeles District Office, you can be informed of which agencies and department approvals are required before you can begin the construction of your new home. Also, it is recommended you speak to a representative of the Department of Regional Planning to determine detailed requirements that may affect the design of your house such as building height and setbacks from property lines. Attached is a link to an informative guide titled One-and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements. East Los Angeles District Office 5119 East Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90022 (323) 260 3450
  • I am looking for a structural set of plans for this commercial buidling. Where do I go to get copies of these plans?
  • Please contact the Santa Clarita Building and Safety Field Office at (661) 222 2940 to coordinate retrieval of the plans. You will be able to view the plans, but not reproduce them. To obtain copies of the plans you will have to contact the architect directly to obtain permission. Santa Clarita District Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Santa Clarita, CA 91355 (661) 222-2940
  • Want a fence is not maintianed around an old swimming pool, can the building depatment force them to repair the fence?
  • If the property in question is located in the unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles you should contact the nearest Sheriff's Station for complaints regarding nonconforming conditions. Attached is a link to a document outlining requirements for swimming pool barriers.
  • I'm looking for some general information about processing a lot line adjustment in the County of Los Angeles. I've been unable to reach anyone at the Regional Planning Department who can help me. 1) Who is the contact person at the County who shepherds a lot line application through the process? 2) At some point, or at several points, is Planning Department review a part of the process? 3) Must a recorded Record of Survey be attached to a lot line adjustment application (in addition to the worded legal description of the property to be adjusted), which shows where the existing property line is, and where the new line will be? 4) Is there a limit to the number of adjusted lots that can be referenced in one lot line adjustment application? 5) What is the estimated time it takes from filing a lot line adjustment application, through recording it with the Los Angeles County Recorder?
  • If the property in question is located in the unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles you may obtain zoning information by contacting the Department of Regional Planning counseling team at (213) 974-6438. Although not required, you may wish to schedule a "One Stop" counseling appointment in order to obtain additional information from representatives of the Department of Public Works, the Fire Department and Regional Planning staff. You may schedule a "One Stop" appointment by calling (213) 974-6438. One Stop" meetings are held at the Department of Regional Planning, Hall of Records Room 1360, 320 West Temple Street, Los Angeles.
  • How or where can I apply for a county plumber's license and how much are the fee's for obtaining this license?
  • You can apply at the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Headquarters located at 900 S. Fremont (3rd floor) in Alhambra for a fee of $54.20. If you have a valid City of Los Angeles Journeyman Plumber Certificate, you may provide proof of L.A. City certification and pay the fee to receive the County Certificate. If you do not have L.A. City certification you are required to pay the fee and pass the Journeyman Plumber examination. The next exam will be given April 13, 2005. County plumber's license information can be obtained by calling (626) 458-3176.
  • Where can I obtain specific zoning details if I have an APN or just thomas guide coordinates? Is there some site I can just input nfo and get the zoning ordinance?
  • If the property is located in the unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles you may obtain zoning information by contacting the Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411. Below is a link to the Department of Regional Planning website for your convenience. Although not required, you may wish to schedule a "One Stop" counseling appointment in order to obtain additional information from representatives of the Department of Public Works, the Fire Department and Regional Planning staff. You may schedule a "One Stop" appointment by calling (213) 974-6438. One Stop" meetings are held at the Department of Regional Planning, Hall of Records Room 1360, 320 West Temple Street, Los Angeles.
  • does a person need an excavation permit for dumping dirt in his yard?
  • The County of Los Angeles Building Code does not require a grading permit under the following conditions: · An excavation that (a) is less than 2 feet (610 mm) in depth or (b) does not create a cut slope greater than 5 feet (1524 mm) in height and steeper than 1 unit vertical in 2 units horizontal (50% slope) and does not exceed 50 cubic yards (38.3M3). · A fill not intended to support structures and which does not obstruct a drainage course if such fill (a) is placed on natural grade that has a slope not steeper than five horizontal to one vertical and is less than 1 foot (305 mm) deep, or (b) is less than 3 feet (914 mm) in depth at its deepest point, measured vertically upward from natural grade to the surface of the fill, and does not exceed 50 cubic yards (38.2 m3), or (c) does not exceed 20 cubic yards (15.3 m3) on any one lot. Not knowing the extent of the proposed fill it is difficult to determine if a grading permit is required. Therefore, it is recommended you contact the local Building and Safety District Office and discuss your project in more detail with the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer.
  • What agency holds and governs building plans in the County and/or city of Los Angeles?
  • If the property in question is located in the unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles, or certain contract cities, the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division is the administrative authority for building plans. A link is provided below for the location of Building and Safety offices. If the property in question is located in the City of Los Angeles please contact the City of Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety for questions regarding building plans. A link is provided below for your convenience.
  • There is an 18' sewer easement running along the north edge (rear) of a property zoned R3, if apartments were constructed on the property, would uncovered parking and/or a drive isle be permitted over the easement? Also, is landscaping and site lighting permitted within the easement?
  • The terms of the easement are part of the documents recorded against the property that restrict the use by the current and future owners of the property. The terms also state the legal rights of the beneficiary of the easement. Please contact the County of Los Angeles Registrar-Recorder to obtain a copy of the recorded documents to obtain answers to your questions, a link is provided below for your convenience.
  • I don't know if this is the right department, but I have a question and hope you can answer it. If this is not the right department will you forward it to the right department? My husband and I are looking at a 20 acre piece of property located in LA county, on Big Pines Hwy just west of Largo Vista Rd. I have a copy of the county Assessor's map T.4 N., R. 9 W. parcel number 4, code 4666. We have a geological survey map showing the property in the San andreas Rift Zone. My question is, can a residential home be built on this property? Can you send us the CC &Rs, and the owners name and address? Thank you
  • Zoning information may be obtained by contacting the Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411. Public counter hours are 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., and 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Although not required, you may wish to schedule a "One Stop" counseling appointment in order to obtain additional information from representatives of the Department of Public Works, the Fire Department and Regional Planning staff. You may schedule a "One Stop" appointment by calling (213) 974-6438. One Stop" meetings are held at the Department of Regional Planning, 320 West Temple Street, Los Angeles. County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 (213) 974-641
  • Is California governed by the Uniform Plumbing Code or the International Plumbing Code? What does Los Angeles County actually go by in respect to its inspections?
  • The current state plumbing code is the 2001 California Plumbing Code that is based on the 2000 Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC) published by the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO). The current plumbing code in areas served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works is the 2002 County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code that is based on the 2001 California Plumbing Code.
  • What are the guidelines for the installation of solar photovoltaic systems in LA County?
  • Requirements for the installation of solar photovoltaic systems are found in Article 690 of the 1999 National Electrical Code and section 690-19 of the 2002 County of Los Angeles Electrical Code. Electrical permits are required for such installations and may be obtained at the Building and Safety District Office that serves the area of the installation.
  • The property at the listed address has a seepage pit that seems to be overflowing. It drains across a public road, onto my property, down my driveway and stands on Topanga Canyon Blvd. This situation has existed for a long time. As I read the codes, that situation makes the house uninhabitable. Can Building and Safety terminate this nuisance?
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Environmental Health Services at (626) 430 5380 to report your concerns regarding the private sewage disposal system. A link to the Report-a-Problem page is provided for your convenience.
  • My neighbor wants to install a fence between our properties. I had a surveyor survey the property lines last year. Now that we both know where the property line is between the two houses, she wants to install the fence right on the property line. This will result in making holes on the brick wall between the two houses. Not even mentioning about the view that's going to be limited, it will ruin the brick walls I cherish as part of the driveway. What is the guidelines about building a fence on the property, especially when my neighbor wants to install one without my consent. I guess I can't stop her installing one on her property but I want to know if there's any way I can stop her from making holes right on the property line. Thank you for your response.
  • The installation of a fence on a property line requires the agreement of both property owners. If your neighbor insists on building on the property line without your consent or damages your property it becomes a civil matter. Your neighbor may install a fence on their own property clear of the property line. Please note that a free standing fence up to six (6) feet in height does not require a permit, but is still subject to zoning requirements established by the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning, a link is provided below for your convenience.
  • I recently sold a house in unincorporated Whittier. The buyer was aware that the back room is not permitted. I also told the realtor that the den area was built before I purchased the house and was also unpermitted. The realtor told the new buyers that the den was grandfathered in and didn't document it in the paperwork. Now, the buyers are having an issue with this. How am I liable for this? Am I liable? Is the realtor liable?
  • Please contact your real estate agent regarding the written disclosures that you and the buyer have signed and verify that the realty agents exercised reasonable care and skill in performance of their duties. It is recommended you contact a real estate attorney if you have any legal questions.
  • I HAVE FOUR QUESTION: 1.DO I NEED TO HAVE A PERMIT IF I PUT A NEW ROOF ON MY HOUSE AND WHY? 2. DO I NEED TO HAVE A PERMIT IF I WANT TO MAKE TWO OF MY BEDROOMS BIGGER? 3.DO I NEED TO HAVE A PERMIT IF I WANT TO BUILD A CONNECTED OUTDOOR BACKYARD PATIO? 4.DO I NEED A PERMIT IF I WANT TO RAISE MY BACK YARD BRICK WALL AND IF SO HOW HIGH CAN I GO?
  • Yes, a building permit is required to enlarge or alter any dwelling including an attached patio. Depending on the scope of work electrical, mechanical, or grading permits may also be required. Please contact the La Puente Building and Safety Office at the address indicated below if you have further questions. It is recommended you speak to a representative of the Department of Regional Planning assigned to the La Puente District Office to determine any zoning requirements that may affect the design of your proposed work. Attached is a link to an informative guide titled One-and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements. La Puente District Office 16005 E. Central Ave La Puente, CA (626) 961 9611
  • I have a family friend that they've just bought a house in Temple City, Los Angeles County. When they bought it, the agent showed them the county record as living area is 1847 sq.ft. (The lot size is over 9,000). But after they closed Escrow, they would like to apply a Patio Enclosed permit from Temple City city hall since it was rainning heavily this year. When they were in the counter of the city planning department, they were told that the city record for this house with the living area is only 1360 sq.ft.(The lost size is the same as county's). They were told that before they applied Patio Enclosed, they should legalize the different part between city's and county's. They've already hired the architect to draw the exist house plan and submitted to the city hall planning department. The planning department reviewed it already, said they will contact either architect or them, but right now one month passed and no phone call has been received yet. They've contacted them several times but no answer yet. Question 1: Is it right that sometimes the city record is different from county record? If it is, whose record should be complied with? Question 2: Usually how long should the planning department review the plan? Thank you so much for your kind attention and help.
  • The County of Los Angeles Office of the Assessor should have historical records including permit information in the parcel jacket. If the additional area was in fact permitted the discrepancy between the city records and the county assessor may be due to incomplete city records. Please contact the Assessor East District Office indicated below to obtain more information regarding your property. Please refer questions regarding the city planning review process to the City of Temple City Planning Department at (626) 285-2171, the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works does not have jurisdiction over city planning matters. East District Office 1190 Durfee Ave. South El Monte, Ca 91733 Phone : (626) 258-6001
  • The owner of this residence wants to build a bathroom addition. Which Dept. of Bldg. and Safety would process the permit? And is a survey and soils report required? Thanks. - Anthony
  • Please visit the Building and Safety Calabasas/Malibu District Office indicated below to obtain plan approval and permits for the project proposed, a plan checker will inform you of specific requirements for final approval. In areas of questionable geologic or soil stability the Building and Safety Division may require a review by the Geotechnical and Materials Engineering Division. Therefore, geotechnical or soil reports may be requested. Attached is a link to an informative guide titled One-and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements. Calabasas/Malibu District Field Office 4111 North Las Virgenes Road Calabasas, 91302 (818) 880 4150
  • What drawings are required for plan check for a 400 square foot addition? Are Title 24 calculations required to be part of the drawings?
  • Attached is a link to an informative guide titled One-and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements outlining minimum plan submittal requirements. If the property is located in an area served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works you may contact a Building and Safety District Office that serves your area for specific questions regarding your project. A link is provided below to identify the location of district offices. A complete Certificate of Compliance (Form CF-1R) is required for an addition and should be part of the submittal for plan approval. The compliance approach may include calculations for the performance approach, but under certain conditions you may use a prescriptive approach (Package) allowed by the California Energy Commission. Please contact the California Energy Commission at 1 (800) 772 3300 for specific questions regarding your project.
  • I AM PLANNING TO INSTALL 12x10 PATIO COVER IN MY BACK YARD. I AM GETTING A UNIT DESIGNED BY WOODGUARD COMPANY WHICH REQUERS SIMPLE INSTALLATION. DO I NEED PERMIT FOR THIS? THANK YOU
  • A one-story detached accessory building not exceeding 120 square feet in roof area is exempt from the need to obtain a building permit. However, a building permit is required to install an attached patio cover. Please contact the Lomita Building and Safety District Office at the address indicated below if you have further questions. It is recommended you speak to a representative of the Department of Regional Planning assigned to the Lomita District Office to determine any applicable zoning requirements that may affect the installation of your patio cover. Lomita/Lennox District Office 24320 South Narbonne Ave Lomita, CA 90717 (310) 534 3760
  • On unincorporated 2.5 acre plot in the West Antelope Valley that has an existing manufactured home on it: 1. Must I pull permits to pour a concrete slab in the back yard? 2. What is the maximum size for detached patio cover/carports that do not require a permit? (I hear different stories from different salespersons, so thought I'd go to the experts.) Thanks!
  • 1. Platforms and walkways not more than 30 inches above grade do not need a building permit, but it is recommended that you contact the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer located at the Antelope Valley District Office at (661) 723 4444 to verify that the scope of work does not require a grading permit. 2. A building permit is required to construct patio covers and carport structures. Please contact the Antelope Valley District Office at the address indicated below if you have further questions. Antelope Valley District Office 335A East Avenue K-6 Lancaster, CA 93535 (661) 723 4440
  • My property is located in Altadena. Due to the recent rains, my neighbor is constructing concrete drainage channels on his hillside slope which are pitched towards my driveway, which runs downhill and parallel to our property line. I'm afraid that during a deluge, my driveway will be overburdened with the additional runoff from this recently constructed drainage apparatus and flood my swimming pool and home. Are there specific codes and permits required to divert rain runoff to an adjacent property? The channels terminate less than 5 feet from our property line. Thank you.
  • Please contact the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer for the San Gabriel Valley at (626) 574 0946 for questions regarding storm drainage from private property. A link to a Homeowners Guide for Flood, Debris, and Erosion Control is provided below for your information. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Ave Arcadia, CA 91007 (626) 574 0941
  • Does a hedge or thick growth of schrubbs or trees qualify as a wall? Also, what are wall height restrictions in Residential zoning for both front and side yards?
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning for questions regarding zoning requirements for fences, a link is provided below for your convenience. Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411
  • I am planning on purcahsing a family house in Alto Dena, and I will be remodling the property; When all permits are approve, do I need a demo permit before I remove the old roof?
  • Please contact the San Gabriel Valley Building and Safety District Office at (626) 574-0941 to verify which permits are required for the scope of work proposed. If you first obtain a permit from Building and Safety to replace the roof the demolition of the existing roof will be included in the permitted work. Any required permits can be obtained at the following address: San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 South Baldwin Arcadia, CA 91007
  • Per Title Co. this property is zoned as "LCRAYY" I would like to know the meaning of this code. I appreciate any information you can probide. Thank you.
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411 regarding zoning related items in the unincorporated areas of the County of Los Angeles, a link is provided below for your convenience.
  • My garage is flooding every time it rains. I have 3 questions: 1) Do I need a permit to tear the structure down? 2) I would like to build a mother-in-laws quarters for my future mother-in-law who is planning on moving to California from New Jersey in the next few months. If I build the garage 15 feet from the rear property line, then I will no longer have a backyard. Are there any exceptions to the set back rules? 3) How long does it generally take to get a permit to build a mother-in-law quarters? Thank you.
  • Yes, a permit is required to demolish an existing building. Once the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning approves your plans for new construction, the building plans should be submitted with a building permit application at the Lomita District Office located at 24320 S. Narbonne Ave. Thereafter, the initial building plan review should be complete in two weeks. It is recommended that you contact the Lomita District Office at (310) 534 3760 and speak to a plan checker and the regional planning representative if you have specific questions about your project. Regarding the setback zoning requirements you may contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning, a link is provided below for your convenience Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411
  • I am an ICBO / ICC Certified Electrical / Mechanical / Plumbing / Building / Combination Building Inspector and have been for since 1999, I work for County Of Los Angeles Sanitation District, where I am an Inspector 2 level 5, LACSD currently requires that you have an Los Angeles County Deputy Concrete Certification to advance to a Inspector 3 with the Sanitation District. Does Los Angeles County Public Works have a Deputy certification for Electrical / Mechanical / Plumbing / Building??? If so what are the steps to obtain that cerification. If not I guess I will need to obtain the Deputy Concrete and would like to no those requirements. Could you forward me that information. As I stated I work for LACSD and have spoken to several of the Engineers in our Field Engineering about this matter, and they are willing to help rewrite our requirements for an Inspector III position to include other than the Los Angeles Deputy Certification which has been a long established requirement at the sanitation district but as I am sure you have seen at Public Works with today changes in the construction industry everything isn't about concrete, and with todays technology and inovations come change. Any help you can provide me with information would be of great assistance as I attempt to assist our new management from our Field Engineer Division. Sincerely Phillip R. Cooper LACSD Contructio Inspector
  • The County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division has only four (4) deputy inspector certifications: reinforced concrete, structural masonry, pre-stressed concrete, structural steel and welding. A person with the following qualifications may apply with the County of Los Angeles for certification as a deputy inspector in a particular discipline mentioned above: 1) Current International Code Council (ICC) certification in the discipline. 2) One (1) year of inspection experience in the discipline. 3) Three (3) years of work experience in the discipline. 4) Three (3) reference letters with knowledge of inspection in the discipline. Once the listed items are established an applicant will qualify for an oral interview where an interview panel, including an engineer, will question the applicant on procedures and codes in the discipline he/she is applying for. Then the panel decides whether to issue the LACO deputy inspector certificate. Fees and application information can be obtained by calling (626) 458 3176.
  • Can I used the rebars (Footings on a slab foundation) to attached a grounding wire on a new add on living space on my house. That grounding wire I'll be using only on one of the existing power outlet(receptacle) of that space for add on safety? As observe,the outlet has no wire connection on the earth grounding.
  • Yes, using a listed clamp, rebar may be used per Section 250-50 (3) of the 2007 California Electrical Code to ground an existing outlet supplied with a ground terminal. If you have any questions please contact the Building and Safety Electrical Section at (626) 458-3180.
  • Us Bank would like to install a temporary portable generator at our production site at the above address. This standby generator would only be operated in the event of a loss of utility power. This site has an existing automatic transfer switch. Generator would be rented from Quinn Power. Generator has a CARB certification #114578. My question is, what information and or design drawing would I need to submit to get approval for this temporary installation. The generator would be on site for 120 to 150 days.
  • All electrical equipment installed in the areas served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works shall be listed by UL, ETI, ETL or etc. If the generator has a disconnecting means rated 400a or more, complete electrical drawings need to be submitted for plan check. If less than 400a, the contractor can visit the La Mirada Building and Safety Office at the address indicated below to obtain an electrical permit. If you have any questions please contact Mr. Nader Shams at (626) 458-3180. La Mirada Building and Safety Office 13700 S. La Mirada Blvd La Mirada, CA (562) 943 0131
  • Zoning of the subject property is said to be LC M2 (manufacturing). Please advise where I may get a copy of the zoning code or a list of permitted uses under M2. Thank you
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411 regarding zoning issues in the unincorporated areas of the County of Los Angeles, a link is provided below for your convenience. You may view Title 22 (Planning and Zoning) of the Los Angeles County Code with the link provided below.
  • I am interested in purchasing a vacant lot but the street in front is 10 feet across. Can I build on a lot with a narrow street? In addition, there is a slope on the property. Are there any special permits I need to obtain and are there any special considerations ? Thanks
  • Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning at (213) 974-6411 regarding zoning issues in the unincorporated areas of the County of Los Angeles, a link is provided below for your convenience. Although not required, you may wish to schedule a "One Stop" counseling appointment in order to obtain additional information from representatives of the Department of Public Works, the Fire Department and Regional Planning staff. You may schedule a "One Stop" appointment by calling (213) 974-6438. Regarding the slope of the property, a grading permit may be required depending on the scope of work, and a soils report may be required to obtain approval of the structural plans. If you have further questions regarding improvements please contact the East Los Angeles Building and Safety Office at (323)260-345. County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 (213) 974-6411
  • I live in an unincorporated area of Los Angeles, and I own a home that was built in 1928. I want to renovate and build an addition, and I would really like the original (or most recent) building plans for that property. Does the "City of Los Angeles" Bldg Dept have access to these original plans? Where else can I obtain them? How are the building codes followed if the orginal plans aren't available? Thank you for all your help. AIN - 5024-007-014
  • The City of Los Angeles would not have access to the most recent building plans for the property address provided. Depending on how long it has been since the most recent plans were submitted, the County of Los Angeles Lomita District Office may still have a copy of the building plans. However, upon final inspection, plans for single family residences are not retained by our district offices more than 90 days. If the plans are available, you would be able to view those plans, but not reproduce them because laws protect the work of architects, similar to copywriting of material by authors. The Building and Safety staff should be able to provide you with any available information about the architect and/or builder. You would then have to contact them directly to obtain a copy of the plans. Additions, alterations or repairs may be made to any dwelling or structure without requiring the existing dwelling or structure to comply with all the requirements of the current codes, provided the work for the addition, alteration or repair conforms to that required for a new building or structure. Furthermore, as a result of the proposed new work, the existing building or structure shall not be rendered more hazardous than before the work is undertaken with respect to life safety, fire safety, structural safety, or sanitation. Exception: The installation/replacement of glass and/or the replacement of more than 25% of the existing roof shall be as required for new installations. Please contact the Lomita District Office at (310) 534 3760 if you have any specific questions regarding your project. Also, for you information, a link is provided to an informative guide titled One- and Two-Family Residential Building Code Requirements. County of Los Angeles Building and Safety Lomita District Office 24320 South Narbonne Ave. Lomita, CA 90717 (310) 534 3760
  • What are the requirements for building a single family residence in a flood zone area? And what are the requirements for septic systems in such areas?
  • Please contact the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer assigned to the Santa Clarita District Office at (661) 222-2957 to obtain information regarding construction in a flood zone area. Department of Public Works Building and Safety Santa Clarita District Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Valencia, CA (661) 222-2940 Please contact the County of Los Angeles Department of Environmental Health at (626) 430-5380 regarding construction of a private sewage disposal system, a link is provided for your convenience.
  • A neighbor is adding on to her 2 rental units on her property. How can I find out if proper permits have been placed? I'm specifically concerned about the amount of off-street parking that has to be made available now that the units are being significantly enlarged. Thanks!
  • Please contact the San Gabriel Valley District Office at (626) 574 0941 to obtain available public information for the property mentioned. If you find that the construction is not permitted you can ask to speak with the code enforcement representative at the San Gabriel District Office. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 S. Baldwin Ave. Arcadia, Ca (626) 574 0941
  • I want to apply to be certified as a Reinforced Concrete Special Inspector for LA County through the Building and Safety Division of Public Works. I have the application for testing, but I can not find the instuctions or the qualifications necessary to apply. They are not on-line any where. Please reply with the Qualifications necessary to apply, the reference material needed for the testing, the required fee for the certification, who can submit reference letters on my behalf. Thank you
  • An applicant with the following qualifications can apply for certification as a reinforced concrete deputy inspector for the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division: 1) Current International Code Council (ICC) certification in reinforced concrete. 2) One (1) year of inspection experience of reinforced concrete. 3) Three (3) years of work experience with reinforced concrete. 4) Three (3) reference letters with knowledge of inspection in the field of reinforced concrete. Once the listed items are established an applicant will qualify for an oral interview where an interview panel, including an engineer, will question the applicant on procedures and codes in the discipline he/she is applying for. Then the panel decides whether to issue the LACO deputy inspector certificate. Fees and application information can be obtained by calling (626) 458 3176.
  • I need to find out whether a residential pool needs to be fenced in or not. The pool itself is not currently fenced; however, the yard is enclosed and there is a self latching gate at the entrance of the yard. I am considering removing the gate, but installing a new automatic gate at the driveway leading to the yard. Please let me know if this is allowed. Also, where can I call if I have any questions about the building code as it pertains to private pools?
  • A protective barrier that completely surrounds the swimming pool and obstructs access to the swimming pool from off-site or from doors leading directly from the dwelling unit to the pool is required. Please refer to the link below to an informative handout detailing the requirements. Also, you may review Chapter 11.50 of the Los Angeles County Health and Safety Code. If you have further questions please contact the San Gabriel Valley District Office at (626) 574 0941. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 S. Baldwin Avenue Arcadia, CA (626) 574 0941
  • QUESTION 1 WHEN GIVING PERMITS OUT FOR Building OF ANYTHING IN GENERAL DO YOU CHECK OTHER PROPERTIES AROUND THE PROPERTY FOR ISSUES LIKE EASEMENT RIGHTS AND PROPERTY LINES? BECAUSE THE ABOVE ADDRESSS DID NOT AND WERE GIVING PERMITS WHY!
  • During plan check, before a building permit is issued, the Building and Safety Division of the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works does verify the clearances from property lines as required by the building code. The County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning must also approve construction plans to verify compliance with setbacks and clearances as required by the zoning code. In the field our building inspectors complete their inspections based on the approved plans. If you have any further questions please contact the office manager of the La Puente District Office at (626) 961 9611. Violations of any private easements should be brought to the attention of the builder. If you suspect that a construction project encroaches on your property it is recommended that you obtain a survey from a licensed surveyor to support your findings. La Puente Building and Safety District Office 16005 East Central Ave. La Puente, CA 91744 (626) 961-9611
  • What residential plans are required to have the seal of a licensed architect? The form for minimum plan submittal requirements says that they must be wet sealed and signed, WHEN REQUIRED. Please verify/confirm when they are required. Also, to what extent is there grandfathering for older homes in the county that were built and added on to over the last 100 years, without permitting? Is a pre-permit inspection and approval required before a new addition permit can be given? If so, what will this inspection entail, and what upgrades will likely be required? The existing house is approximately 1000 SF, built by the owner's grandfather and added on to / upgraded over time by various family members. The proposed addition is approximately 450 SF attached the back end of the house with little or no remodeling to the existing house, other than to connect the two.
  • Section 5537 of the Business and Professions Code does not require a licensed architect to stamp plans for a single-family dwelling of woodframe construction not more than two stories and basement in height, but the Building and Safety Division of County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works may request the preparation of plans, drawings, specifications, or calculations by, or under the responsible control, of a licensed architect or registered engineer if the structure deviates from conventional light frame construction. The plan checker assigned to review your project will have the authority to determine the requirements for final approval. If you confirm that permits have not been obtained for previous additions, you should contact the office manager at the San Gabriel Valley Building and Safety Office at (626) 574-0941 to obtain information on how to legalize the un-permitted portions of the building. The typical procedure to legalize an existing, un-permitted structure depends on the size and complexity of the addition, this can involve a variety of steps from having an engineer review the existing construction to demolishing and rebuilding portions of the un-permitted addition. Because the addition was constructed without permits, if it is permitted now it must meet the requirements of the current codes. This could involve retrofitting the foundation, walls, or framing to meet the requirements of today's building code requirements. As mentioned above, the office manager will be able to guide you through the process in more detail. San Gabriel Valley District Office 125 S. Baldwin Avenue Arcadia, CA (626) 574 0941
  • We wish to build a garage on our property. What is the setback. Thank you
  • Please contact the Department of Regional Planning representative assigned to the County of Los Angeles Santa Clarita District Office regarding the applicable zoning issues for your project. It is recommended you contact the district office at (661) 222-2940 to verify the counter hours of the Regional Planner assigned to serve your area. Santa Clarita District Office 23757 Valencia Blvd Valencia, CA 91355 (661) 222-2940
  • For additional room to my existing residential house: What sewer/drain pipe size do I use for Toilet drain & vent? for bath tub drain & vent? for bathroom wash basin drain & vent? What pipe material should I use? ABS,PVC or metal? Can I run sewer/drain pipe through exterior/interior footing (footing is 24 inches deep)? What maximum distance from toilet other fixtures (bath tub, wash basin or sink) must the vent be placed? What is the minimum grade/slope required forthe sewer/drain line (for back flow prevention)?
  • Table 7-5 of the 2002 County of Los Angeles Plumbing Code requires that the minimum drainage pipe size for a water closet is 3 and the minimum vent shall be 2 pipe size. A bath tub drain shall be a minimum of 2(horizontal) or 1 1/2 (vertical) drain pipe size, with a minimum 1 1/2 vent pipe size. A lavatory requires a 1 1/4 minimum drain and vent pipe size. The minimum slope required for drainage piping less than 4 in pipe size is 1/4 per foot slope. Section 701 .1 of the plumbing code lists all of the approved drainage piping materials. Schedule 40 ABS or schedule 40 PVC are limited to not more than two stories of residential construction. A drainage pipe cannot be imbedded in concrete or masonry, but may be installed when not subject to undue strain or stresses. Typically, wrapping or sleeves will provide adequate protection when penetrating concrete. The building sewer must be a minimum of two feet from the building, and the edge of a trench (deeper than the footing parallel to the building sewer) must be 45 degrees away to avoid imposing a load on the pipe. Vents must be installed within the required trap arm distance per Table 10-1 of the plumbing code. You may review the plumbing code over the counter at the La Puente District Office. County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Disision La Puente District Office 16005 East Central Avenue La Puente, CA (626) 961-9611
  • Do you have a Cost Estimate Unit Price list for commercial/industrial and/or residential construction?
  • The cost of a building permit depends on the occupancy and the type of construction. For any specific questions on this process please contact our Building Section at: 900 S. Fremont Ave. Alhambra, CA. 91803 626-458-3173 Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • We just purchase this property and we have foundation problems and they have suggested to have drainage work done...we cant seem to find any one to get this job done any suggestion would help thank you very much...
  • The County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works cannot refer contractors or engineers to the public. It is recommended you use a commercial listing of businesses (i.e. yellow pages) to obtain the services of a licensed contractor or registered engineer.
  • Where can I get a permit to repair my roof? Do I need a permit to remodel my bathroom and kitchen?
  • A building permit is required to alter or repair your dwelling. If structural, plumbing, electrical or mechanical work is proposed to remodel your bathroom and kitchen, permits will be required for the respective disciplines. Please contact the Building and Safety Lomita District Field Office for permit information. County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division Lomita District Office 24320 South Narbonne Ave Lomita, CA (310) 534-3760
  • We have a customer planning to install one of our test systems, which uses 20A 3-Phase 208VAC power. I need to find out if this test system will require an NRTL certification in order to be installed in Torrance. I appreciate your assistance. Best Regards, Keri Jurjovec Agilent Technologies
  • If the equipment is installed in a contract city served by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works or in an unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles, per Title 27 Article 82-3 of the County Code, any equipment operating at more than 25 volts and capable of supplying more than 50 watts of energy shall be listed. NRTL is one of the approved listing agencies, but testing of one-of-kind equipment by a testing agency from our approved list is also an option. Please contact the Electrical Section at (626) 458-3180 if you have further questions regarding approved listing agencies. If the installation is in the City of Torrance please contact the Department of Community Development for information regarding electrical code requirements, a link to the city website is provided for your convenience.
  • Do i need to get a permit to build a carport in the rear of my house that would measure approximately 6'h x 10'W x 25'L? What would a permit to build this carport cost me? Do i have to get a licensed contractor to build it for me or can i hire anyone? Would an inspector want to come and supervise the work? If so, would he also want to check the rest of my house and surrounding structures, even though he's just there for the building of the carport? Any information is appreciated. thanks
  • Yes, a building permit is required to construct a carport structure. In order to obtain a building permit you will need a site plan of the proposed carport showing its size and setbacks from property lines. A building permit fee is based on the valuation of the structure plus a nominal permit issuance fee. A licensed contractor is recommended for any construction project, but a homeowner/builder can take responsibility for construction regardless of who actually performs the work. You or your contractor may obtain the required permit(s) at the District Office serving your area, a link is provided for your convenience for locations of our district offices. Inspectors do not supervise work, but do inspect the new construction to verify compliance with applicable building code requirements. Existing permitted structures would not be affected unless the new carport will be attached to an existing structure. If the carport is attached, as a result of the proposed new work, the existing building or structure shall not be rendered more hazardous than before the work is undertaken. Finally, if the inspector identifies anything illegal on the property it will have to be addressed simultaneously with the permitted work. Un-permitted work must be legalized before the inspector can approve the new carport.
  • Is PEX (crosslinked polyethylene) an approved material to repipe a home?
  • The 2011 Los Angeles County Plumbing Code allows for the use of PEX for water supply and disstribution in residences and commercial structures. For additional information please contact your local Building and Safety District Office. http://dpw.lacounty.gov/bsd/index.cfm?p=offices Thank you for your inquiry.
  • The County put in a sewer line prior to Agoura Hills being incorporated. House laterals were put up to the property lines. A year ago we had a house built and they connected to the lateral. After awhile, the sewage began to come up through the asphalt. It is claimed that the cause of sewer problem was the lateral was never hooked up to the main. 2 questions: 1. Why wouldn't the Contrator connect the lateral to the main? 2. How does the County handle claims like this?
  • Please contact Mr. Hu Yi at (626) 300-3374 from the Sewer Maintenance Division to send a crew to investigate the situation. Please note that section 101.4.1.2 of the plumbing code indicates that maintenance of the plumbing and drainage system, including the building sewer lateral up to the point of connection to the public sewer, is the responsibility of the owner.
  • What is the stair requirement for riser height and tread depth? Also, for the truss loading, is there a specific wind design method? What is the Exposure Category? Is there a Live Load (Ground or Roof psf)requirement? What is the wind velocity in Miles Per Hour?
  • Chapter 10, Section 1003.3.3.3 of the Los Angeles County Building Code states the following: The rise of steps and stairs shall not be less than 4 inches nor more than 7 inches. The greatest riser height within any flight of stairs shall not exceed the smallest by more than 3/8&.the run shall not be less than 11 inches as measured horizontally between the vertical planes of the furthermost projection of adjacent treads or nosings. Stair treads shall be of uniform size and shape, except the largest tread run within any flight of stairs shall not exceed the smallest by more than 3/8 inch. Exceptions for private steps and stairways serving an occupant load of less than 10 and stairways to unoccupied roofs may have a maximum rise of 8 inches and a minimum run of 9 inches. Finally, risers adjacent to a public way, walkways or a driveway serving as a landing can have risers less than 4 inches in height with restrictions on the variation in height from the top and bottom risers. You may review the building code over the counter at the Antelope Valley Building and Safety District Office indicated below. Wind exposure design requirements vary based on the region, please contact a building plan checker from the Antelope Valley Building and Safety Office at (661) 723 4440 for design criteria in your area. County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division 335A East Avenue K-6 Lancaster (661) 723 4440
  • What are the requirements of Title 24, as it concerns the probable increase in energy consumption, of a single story, single family dwelling that is opened to access a proposed permitted addition of a solarium, and what are the steps that the builder of the solarium is required to take in order to be in compliance with Title 24?
  • Compliance with the Residential Energy Efficiency Standards is required if the existing house is opened to an addition. Before a building permit can be issued for a new directly conditioned space, approval of plans that include all of the compliance features per the applicable Prescriptive or Performance (computer) approach and a complete Certificate of Compliance (CF-1R) is required. For more information you may visit the California Energy Commission website with the link provided below or call the Energy Efficiency Hotline at 1-800-772-3300 (toll free in Calif.)
  • I would like to upgrade my main electrical box and what upgrade is suitable for proper use.House was built in 1955
  • The 2001 California Electrical Code requires a minimum 100 amp-120/240 V single phase service for an average home (less than 1500 sf). If your home has excessive electrical loads you must use load calculations to calculate your minimum requirement per Article 220 of the 2001 California Electrical Code. For your information, examples of load calculations can be found in Appendix D of the electrical code.
  • What are the code requirements regarding fireplaces in new single family residential construction [already under permit]. In particular, I want to know requirements pertaining to screens on pre-fab gas log fireplaces as well as wood burning masonry firepalces, in a living room and/or master bedroom. Thank you.
  • Installation of a fireplace shall conform to the requirements of Chapter 31 of the County of Los Angeles Building Code. Approved decorative gas appliances (i.e. gas log fireplace) shall comply with the requirements of the County of Los Angeles Mechanical Code specified for heating equipment and heating appliances. A decorative appliance must be listed for vented use and the venting shall comply with Chapter 8 of the County of Los Angeles Mechanical Code. The installation of a vented gas log fireplace shall comply with the requirements of the listing including clearances from combustible materials. Section 150(e) of the California Energy Efficiency Standards requires that a masonry or factory-built fireplace shall have the following: 1) Closeable metal or glass doors covering the entire opening of the firebox; 2) A combustion air intake to draw air from the outside of the building directly into the firebox, which is at least six square inches in area and equipped with a readily accessible, operable and tight fitting damper or combustion-air control device; and Exception: An outside combustion air intake is not required if the fireplace will be installed over concrete slab flooring and the fireplace will not be located on an exterior wall. 3) A flue damper with a readily accessible control. Exception: When a gas log, log lighter, or decorative gas appliance is installed in a fireplace, the flue damper shall be blocked open if required by the manufacturer's installation instructions or the California Mechanical Code.
  • I live in the county section of Pasadena and my house is on a septic system. Most of the houses in this area have been connected to the main sewer that was installed a few years ago. What is the process for connecting my house to the main sewer line?
  • The process to connect to the county public sewer begins at the at a local Building and Safety District Office with an application for a sewer permit. If your lot does not have an existing lateral, a saddle permit is required with approval from the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Construction Division for road excavations and encroachments. If you have further questions please contact your local Building and Safety District Office. A link to locate the district office in your area is provided below.
  • Please provide some direction with regard to requesting a Plot Plan Review. For what I believe is a Yard Modification request. I'm planning to build a retaining wall and a block wall, apparently there is an issue regarding the height of the wall.
  • Yard Modifications and Plot Plan Reviews are conducted through the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning. They may be contacted at (213) 974-6411 or via the link shown below. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I recently had a swimming pool installed by a licensed contractor. There is NOT a drain on the pool... in other words, too much water (either from rains or a leaky valve in the auto-fill) causes the pool to overflow. Are there any construction guidelines/requirements to install a working drain in the swimming pool? Thanks in advance for your help!
  • Thank you for your inquiry. There are no provisions within Los Angeles County Codes that require the installation of a drain with the installation of a new pool. You may wish to contact the licensed contractor who installed your pool for a possible remedy. With respect to the overflow from the pool flowing onto neighbors property, it is a violation of the building code if the drainage is detrimental to the natural flow of water or if the water has the potential to undermine structures. While we cannot recommend a specific course of action, we do suggest you address the overflow with the pool contractor to prevent future drainage problems. Thank you.
  • I have 1 1/4 acres 165' x 330'. Can I divide my property into two lots, say 65' x 330' and 100' x 330'? Can it be done administratively, by written explanation? What is involved and what would I need to do? Thank you.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. The subdivision of a property is handled through the County's Department of Regional Planning, who may be contacted by phone at (213) 974-6411, or on the web at the website shown below. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • Is a permit required for a concrete driveway? What are the requirements for amount/depth of concrete, expansion joint distance per joint, and underlayments such as vapor barrier,ect? Thank you
  • Thank you for your patience and for using our FAQ system. In regards to your question, under the 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code, section 106.3(15) states that a building permit shall not be required for “Platforms, walks and driveways not more than 30 inches (762mm) above grade and not over any basement or story below,” and as such, the driveway construction method is not regulated by the building code".
  • I know that in the past residence in areas not far from where I live have been compensated for having to put up with the disruptions of construction projects. I am wondering who to contact about a compensation for consideration of construction on my block (right out my window). I moved into my residence almost 4 years ago in a nice clean and quite neighborhood. Less than two months later a construction company started tearing down three buildings right next to me to build a larger condominium building. I hadn't lived there soon enough to fight the construction, and might not have, but the construction has gone on, and is still going on today. When I had moved in almost 4 years ago I had just purchased a new black car, and it has gotten dirty from the construction for almost 4 years. Other buildings the same size (at least 3 buildings) and much more elaborate have gone up around the block from this building in less than one year, and are already selling. My neighbors and I believe that this contractor owes us compensation for almost 4 years of construction for not having parking, for making our nice clean quite neighborhood look like a construction zone for so long. We pay high rent, but have to pay for on-street permit parking to which they have taken half of for all this time. The time that they have taken to build this building is unreasonable and we believe we should be compensated for the abuse of time and discern that they have shown all my neighbors and I, continually lying about when they will be done. Also in reading another persons question, and your reply of times they can work, they have blocked off our parking from m-sat 6am-6pm, and sometimes leaving there cones out blocking parking over the whole weekend (when there was no work being done on the parking area) were they allowed to do that. Any help that you can give me would be much appreciated.
  • Thank you using the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works FAQ website. While your concerns are important to us, the properties in question are located under the jurisdiction of the City of Los Angeles. For your convenience, we have included the contact information for the City of L.A. Department of Building and Safety - who may be able to assist you with your inquiry. Thank you.
  • What is the maximum slope allowed for a driveway. What is the minimum width allowed? What is the minimum radius allowed for the driveway approach? The lot is on a hillside.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. While this Department provides many valuable services to our constituents, the details of driveway design are governed by the Department of Regional Planning, and possibly also by the Fire Department. We have provided for your convenience the web sites for both the Department of Regional Planning and the Fire Department to assist in your inquiry. Thank you.
  • We are having a serious problem with extremely high water pressure that's affecting about 15 homes at this point. The pressure is blowing anti-syphon valves & sprinkler heads. We need to get attention to this as soon as possible. Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this matter.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Domestic water pressure is regulated through the water company serving the area in question. Given the cross streets provided in your inquiry, you may fall under the Quartz Hill Water District (661) 943-3170 or under the Palm Ranch Water District (661) 943-2469. Please contact them directly for assistance. Thank you.
  • I'm trying to find the property use code, is this property solely a residential use, or mixed use/commercial use?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Please contact the Department of Regional Planning for zoning questions. We have included a link to their website below, or you may call them at 213-974-6411. Thank you.
  • My house and the house next door share the approach to our driveways which is also shared by a house in the canyon below us. We are aware that this situation was caused by a utility easement which the canyon house has used for many years. He is now trying to sell and is trying to get one or both of us to move our walls to give him a two lane driveway. He is a Real Estate attorney and is using scare tactics to try and convince us he has some right to our property. The Assessors map shows our lots meeting and does not display any information on this driveway. Does he have any right to make the easement area wider? Is there anywhere where this situation would have been documented when his house was built (approx 10 years after our houses)?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. The owner of the easement is the only entity that has the ability to modify it. Private property owners do not have the authority to over ride utility companies and their easements. For more information, you may contact our property management section and the L.A. County Assessor.
  • I would like copies of the building permit for the second home on the lot in question. In addition I would like a copy of the certificate of occupancy. I believe that the original address is 1832 E. 110th st, the second home on the lot has an address of 1834 E. 110th st. It was built last year (2004) around November. Question #1 Can I get these documents on line ? Question #2 If i can not get them on line, what specific office do i need to go to in order to get a copy of them. Question # 3 What is it going to cost me to get the documents? Question # 4 Can I get a copy or does the owner on title need to go in?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. The information you requested is available from the City of Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety, who has jurisdiction over the area and addresses in question. They may be contacted via the web-link provided below, or by calling 1-888-LA4-BUILD. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • i own and live in a 4 unit building with a small front lawn. i currently do not have any parking on the property. i would like to pave part of the front lawn to create a parking area and would need to create an easement from street onto the yard to do this. is this possible? if so, i expect i would need a permit to create an easement from street to parking. where would i obtain it?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Your property is located in the incorporated City of Los Angeles, over which the County Department of Public Works does not have jurisdiction. As such, you may contact the city with your inquiry. We have provided a link to their website below for your convenience. Thank you.
  • I am having a contractor replace my central air conditioning system with a newer more efficient model. I am having the work done by Sears who contracted out the installation to a local licensed contractor. The contractor just recently installed the AC unit and I am concerned that the installation is not to code (which by contract they were required to do.) For example, the AC unit is placed directly in front of an electral junction box therefore blocking access to it. Where can I find the building code requirements/standards for AC installations. I am interested in setback requirements from house and/or clearances from electral equipment and support/foundation requirements for the AC unit itself and for the copper refrigerant lines. Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Our Building and Safety Division's Electrical Section will be happy to assist you with your inquiry. Please call 626-458-3180 and ask to speak with an electrical plan check engineer. An additional resource is the L.A. County inspector assigned to your project (as permits and inspections are required by code), who can also be of assistance. You may call our La Puente office at 626-961-9611 and request an inspection for the installation and to discuss your concerns at length. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I am removing a wall in my bathroom to expand the shower as well as repositioning the drain valve. Also, I am creating a walk in closet. What, if any, permits would be required?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. For the work described in the inquiry above, building, plumbing, and possibly electrical permits will be required. Based on the location, you may visit our Arcadia Building and Safety District Office at 125 S. Baldwin Avenue to obtain these permits. The office may be reached by phone for further inquiries at 626-974-0941. Thank you.
  • I need infomation on building a fence around the pool. Is it is nessesary if we dont have kids, nor do our surrounding homes have any kids? Will our exsiting fence be enough or would we need more. Do kids play a role in building a fence or not?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Our Building and Safety Division has vast amounts of information pertaining to the requirements for, and installation of, fences around pools and spas. While the details are too great to summarize here, you may obtain a copy of the requirements from our Lancaster District Field Office, located at 335A East Ave. K-6, Lancaster, CA. They may also be reached by phone at 661-723-4440. The immediate presence of children in the home or neighborhood has no effect on the fencing requirements.
  • I am removing all of my existing stucco and lathing and having a contrator install new lathing and stucco. He says that I need to obtain a permit for this new stucco. What kind of permit do I need, and which office do I go to? Will an inspection be required?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. The description of the work provided above requires a building permit. Based on your location, the building permit may be obtained from our Building and Safety Division's Lomita District Office, located at 24320 S. Narbonne Ave., Lomita, CA. The telephone number to the Lomita office is 310-534-3760. A nominal fee will be necessary for the permit, and an inspection will follow the completion of the work. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I am in the process of preparing a grading plans for the project involving dining area addition to the existing restaurant. Where can I obtain general grading notes that typically goes on the first page/plan of the grading plans? Thank you.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. You can find the requested notes at the following link, or by visiting our website (www.ladpw.org) and searching for Grading Notes. http://www.ladpw.org/general/forms/download/938.pdf?CFID=4520381&CFTOKEN=64020718 Thank you.
  • Is the raised curb in the garage that the sill plate rests on required in new construction?
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using Los Angeles County's FAQ system. Currently there are no requirements in the 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code for the raised curbs in new construction garages. The raised curb is typically used to create an even surface for the walls of the garage to be built on. This is due to the sloping of the garage floor, for draining purposes. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • Who can I refer citizens to when they are reporting a bee hive in a tree or building on County road right of way? Also, who can I refer them to if they live in County area and the bee hive is located on private property?
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using Los Angeles County's FAQ system. According to the address information that you provided, we are unable to determine whether you are located in the jurisdiction of Los Angeles County. Therefore the following information only applies if you are located within our jurisdiction. Below I have provided a link, titled Road Maintenance, that gives the contact information for the Road Maintenance Division. Please contact them in regards to a bee hive that is located on a tree or building in a Los Angeles County road right of way. If the bee hive is located on a tree in private property, please utilize the Los Angeles County Vector District Control links that I have provided below, as they will be able to assist you further with your questions. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • Good Morning, I have been renting a house, in which, the garage was converted into a business, the owner got a letter which says that we have 30 days to move. What are my rights to evacuate this place?
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using Los Angeles County's FAQ system. In regards to the rights of renterÂ’s, that is something that is handled by the State. All questions pertaining to this issue, should be directed to the state. Below I have provided a link to the California Department of Consumer Affairs. In this link, you can review your rights as a renter, and the rights of your landlord. Please review this site, and contact them for further assistance. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • Do I need to apply for a permit if I am installing a new water heater?
  • Yes a permit is required for a water heater installation, or replacement.
  • What are the required processes to have a well on your property?
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using our FAQ system. The first step should be to contact the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. They will be able to assist you with all your questions, and explain to you whether it is possible to have a well on your property. Below I have attached a link titled "LADHS", this link will provide you with the contact information for this Department. Please contact them for further assistance. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • I have obtained a building permit for a project of mine. The project is not going to take place anymore. How do I obtain a refund for this permit.
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using our FAQ system. The most efficient, and effective method for obtaining a refund for your permit, is to contact the office in which your permit was issued. The 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code states: "107.12 Refunds. In the event that any person shall have obtained a permit and no portion of the work or construction covered by such permit shall have been commenced, and such permit shall have been canceled either as provided for in Subsection 106.5.4 or Subsection 107.11, the permittee, upon presentation to said Building Official of a request therefor, in writing on a special form, shall be entitled to a refund in an amount equal to 80 percent of the fee actually paid for such permit. The Building Official shall satisfy himself as to the right of such applicant to such refund, and each such refund shall be paid, provided a special form has been submitted prior to one year from expiration of the permit. No portion of the plan checking fee shall be refunded, unless no checking has been performed on a set of plans, in which case 80 percent of the plan checking fee shall be refunded. (Ord. 98-0020 § 11, 1998; Ord. 95-0065 § 3 (part), 1995.)" I have provided two links. The first is to the 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code below, titled "LABC", for your convenience. The second, is a link titled "B&S Offices", which gives the contact information for all of our Building and Safety Offices. Please contact the appropriate Building and Safety office for further assistance. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • I have just received a faxed copy of EMC 82-8. I'm grateful to have received it. I suspect it is not the only section I need. Unless there is a copyright issue (very doubtful), it would be extremely helpful to have the entire Electrical Code Manual available online.
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using Los Angeles County's FAQ system. We are currently updating and posting our Electrical Code Manuals on the Los Angeles County Public works website ("LADPW" link located below). These documents will be accessed by selecting "Forms" in pull down list located in the "search" field, at the top right hand corner of the "LADPW" webpage. Then type in "ECM", in the "for" field located to the right of the "search" field. Then, click on the "Go" button, located to the right of the "for" field. A list of Electrical Code Manuals will be available to download in PDF format. However, at this time, not all of our Electrical Code Manuals have been posted on our website. We are working on this process diligently, and are continually updating this database. We ask that you continue to check our searchable database, for any updates that may have taken place. Please feel free to call us for any Electrical Code Manual questions, or any Electrical Code Manual Requests that you may have. You can contact the Electrical Section at our Headquarters office: 626-458-3180 or 3181. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • What are the allowed hours and days of construction permitted so as not to disturb the neighborhood? A house demolition and re-building project is taking place in my neighborhood and work goes on into the late night hours and on weekends. We need to know if perhaps there may be a violation. We are interested in maintaining good relationships with the owners but are now lacking sleep! Thank you.
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using Los Angeles County's FAQ system. The building construction noise ordinance is codified in Title 12, Chapter 12.12 of Los Angeles County Code (A link to this code has been provided below, titled "LA County"). Another County noise ordinance covering a much broader array of noise sources is codified in Title 12, Chapter 12.08. However, the two ordinances overlap in many ways related to construction, and have different hours for prohibition of loud noise (Chapter 12.12, hours are 8 pm to 6:30 am; Chapter 12.08, hours are 8 pm to 7 am). Violations of any part of Chapter 12.08, including construction noise, is the responsibility of the Health Officer. The primary difference between the two Chapters is that the Health Officer determines violations based on decibel levels (Chapter 12.12), while the Building Construction Noise - Chapter 12.08 - simply restricts certain construction equipment from operating during nighttime hours, regardless of any particular noise level. Although the public must rely on the Sheriff during off-hours for enforcement of Chapter 12.08 regulations, Building and Safety and the Sheriff can issue violations. To summarize - the prohibited hours for Building Construction Noise are between the hours of 8 pm and 6:30 am, Monday through Saturday, and all day Sunday, with certain exceptions. If we receive a complaint either through the Sheriff or through a constituent - such as yourself - we will notify the contractor/builder in writing with a formal correction notice. If the violations persist, we would record a notice of violation against the property until the unwarranted activity ceased. Please contact the Building and Safety District office listed below for any complaints or questions that you may have: Lomita/Lennox Office 24320 S. Narbonne Ave., Lomita 90717 Phone: (310) 534-3760 Fax: (310) 530-5482 I hope this information has been helpful, and thank you again for you inquiry.
  • I would like to put up a 4-ft garden wall using keystone retaining wall system in front of my home I have a slope of 4ft in 15ft and would do 2 part step up of 2ft4ft flat and then 2ft will I need a permit
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Because the wall you have described is on a small slope, a building permit is required, even if you terrace the area with two 2-foot walls. Additionally, the use of a keystone retaining wall system is subject to the approval of our Building Division. Please visit our Building and Safety's Santa Clarita District field office at the address shown below to obtain the permit and additional information. Thank you. LA County Department of Public Works Santa Clarita District Field Office 23757 Valencia Blvd. Valencia, CA 661-222-2940
  • Is it possible to use A1 zoning vacant land as a parking lot or Annex bldg for adjacent (appx.1,500ft away) church?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. However, the question you have posed must be answered by the County's Department of Regional Planning. A link to their website has been provided below. Or, if you would prefer to call, they can be reached at 213-974-6411.
  • How can I get a permit to remove an OAK TREE in my front yard which has it's root cracking my front yard and possibly damaging base of my house.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. In order to make any changes to Oak trees, it is necessary to first obtain approval from the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning. They can be reached at the link below, or at 213-974-6411.
  • What can I do about towing away cars that have not been moved for over 48 hours? There is a vehicle parked in front of my house without license plates that has not been moved for days.
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Parking violations and citations are administered through the LA County Sheriff's Department. Please call your local sheriff to report the vehicle in question. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • We have a condo. The association had new roofs installed and said if we were considering skylights we should have it done now. Several of us made a quick decision and used the suggested contractor to install several Solatubes and one skylight (in garage). We assumed the contractor was taking care of permits. Are there any codes for skylights ? What permits, if any, are required ?
  • Thank you for contacting the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works. Permits ARE required for both re-roofs and for the installation of skylights (including Solatubes). The building code has specific requirements for the installation of skylights. You may view these requirements at the Building and Safety office serving your area. It is located at the address shown below. Thank you for your inquiry. County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works Building and Safety Division Lomita District Field Office 24320 S. Narbonne Ave. Lomita, CA 90717
  • I want to widden my driveway by 18 inches and need to determine if I need a permit to change the curb cut for the driveway. If I need to contact another office, please advise me, Thank you for your assistance.
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using our FAQ system. Our Construction Division handles this type of permit, and can be contacted using the information provided below. Construction Division: Phone: (626) 338-3129 Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • A constituent called our office re: a couch that her neighbor has placed in the driveway. Are there any ordinances regarding placing your own furniture in your own driveway?
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using our FAQ system. Nuisances, such as discarded furniture are handled by our Property Rehabilitation Section. Section 9905.9 of the 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code prohibits discarded furniture to be in yard areas for unreasonable amounts of time. Section 9905.9 of the 2002 County of Los Angeles Building Code can be viewed online, using the link provided below. For further assistance, please contact our Property Rehabilitation Section using the contact information provided below. Property Rehabilitation Section: Address: 900 S. Fremont Avenue Alhambra, CA 91803 Phone: (626) 458-3193 Fax: (626)979-5433 Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • I want to start a yoga studio in the Los Angeles area. I wanted to know if there were any parking requirements required?
  • Thank you for your patience and for using our FAQ system. Depending on the location of the yoga studio, parking requirements will either be under the jurisdiction of Department of Regional Planning or City of Los Angeles Planning department. If the project is in the unincorporated area of Los Angeles County, please contact the Department of Regional Planning at: http://planning.co.la.ca.us/default.htm Hall of Records (13th Floor) 320 West Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 Telephone: (213) 974-6411 If the project is in the incorporated City of Los Angeles, please contact City of Los Angeles Planning department at: http://cityplanning.lacity.org/ 200 North Spring Street Los Angeles, CA 90012-2601 Telephone: (213) 482-7077
  • Can you please tell me what are the submittal requirements for Grading Plan check. i.e, number of plan copies, plan fees, application's, reports, etc.
  • Thank you for your patience, and for using our FAQ system. Please use the link below for the "General Grading Guidelines." This guide contains submittal requirements and other useful information when preparing plans and applications. For further assistance, please contact your closest Building and Safety District Office. Thank you again for your inquiry.
  • Where do I go to get permits for my house?
  • Applications for new permits and records of existing permits are handled and maintained in our district offices. To determine which district office or city serves you, please refer to our Service Locator.
  • Do I need a permit to construct a block wall (fence) on my property?
  • In the unincorporated county areas, a building permit is required for the following: 1) Fences or free standing block walls over 6 feet in height, 2) Retaining walls supporting level grade which measure over 4 feet from the bottom of the foundation to the top of the wall, and 3) Retaining walls of any height supporting a surcharge or slope. Although fences and walls may be exempt from a building permit, they may still require zoning approval from the Department of Regional Planning. Please refer to the Department of Regional Planning website for more information on zoning requirements. If you live in an incorporated city, check with your city building department to determine if a building permit is required. To determine which district office or city serves you, please refer to our Service Locator.
  • I plan to excavate my backyard which is 3 feet above ground in order to build a second unit. Do I need a permit to excavate? If yes, where should I get the permit and what are the requirements? Thank you.
  • The Los Angeles County Building Code requires a grading permit to perform any grading except for the following work: · An excavation that (1) is less than 2 feet (610 mm) in depth or (2) does not create a cut slope greater than 5 feet (1524 mm) in height and steeper than 1 unit vertical in 2 units horizontal (50% slope) and does not exceed 50 cubic yards (38.3M3). · A fill not intended to support structures and which does not obstruct a drainage course if such fill (a) is placed on natural grade that has a slope not steeper than five horizontal to one vertical and is less than 1 foot (305 mm) deep, or (b) is less than 3 feet (914 mm) in depth at its deepest point, measured vertically upward from natural grade to the surface of the fill, and does not exceed 50 cubic yards (38.2 m3), or (c) does not exceed 20 cubic yards (15.3 m3)on any one lot. Required permits (grading, building, mechanical, electrical) can be obtained at the local Building and Safety District Office, a link is provided below for locations of field offices. Also, a link is provided for the Grading Review Sheet or you may contact the Regional Drainage and Grading Engineer at the local District Office to discuss your project in more detail.
  • If I wanted to install an electrically motorized rolling gate at the end of my driveway, do I need a permit? Additionally, do I need to install an independent pedestrian gate?
  • A building permit is required for any fence or similar structure that is greater than 6 feet in height, measured from the lowest adjacent grade. An electrical permit is also required to supply power to the motor. Regardless of the building permit requirements, the Department of Regional Planning must review and approve the gate for compliance with front yard setback and height requirements. For additional information that is specific to your location, please contact the Antelope Valley Building and Safety District Office at the following location: Antelope Valley District Office 335A East Avenue K-6 Lancaster, CA 93535 Phone (661) 524-2390 Fax (661) 524-2399 http://dpw.lacounty.gov/bsd/content/fieldoffices.aspx Thank you for your inquiry.
  • I am trying to find the Code for determining occupancy loads for commercial space. I am trying to calculate the exits required per square feet of space. And I think it also takes into account how many people work in the space.
  • Section 1004 of the County of Los Angeles Building Code defines the requirements for determining occupant loads for any occupied space. The occupant load calculation will depend on the use or occupancy of the space, which is defined in Chapter 3 of the Building Code. Table 1004.1.2 gives the maximum floor area per occupant, depending on this function of the space. Thank you for your inquiry.
  • As a real estate appraiser I get asked if an earthquake gas meter shut~off is required when you do a refinance on a home. I believe it was required in LA county on a transfer of sale only. Pls. qualify. Thanks, Kurt
  • Within the unincorporated area of Los Angeles County, an earthquake shutoff valve is not required at the time of a sale or refinancing of a home. If a shutoff valve is installed, a plumbing plan check and permit is required. Thank you for your inquiry.
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