Frequently Asked Questions
Building Department FAQs
Under what building codes are you operating?
The City is currently under the 2015 ICC Building Codes and the 2020 National Electrical Code.
When do I need a building permit?
The following projects (not all inclusive) require a permit, either a 1 Stop Permit or a Plan Review Permit.
A 1-Stop permit does not require drawings to be submitted for a plan review. Some examples are:
- Air Conditioning System
- Electrical Service Amp Change
- Furnace Replacement
- Gas Fireplace
- Lawn Sprinkler System
- Water Heater Replacement
- Water/Sewer Line Repair/Replacement
- Window/Patio Door Replacement
An application is required for a 1-Stop permit. You will need to know the total value of the work to be performed to complete the application.
Plan Review Permits
Various projects will require you to submit drawings for a plan review. Some examples are:
- Basement Finish
- Fences over seven feet in height
- Gas Line to Patio/Firepit (must provide site plan with location of pipe)
- Patio Cover/Pergola
- Pool/Hot Tub
Plan review permits require two identical drawings. Drawings must show all structural components and be to scale. Residential additions require two foundation drawings stamped by a Colorado licensed engineer or architect.
A site plan is required for any addition or structure that will be added to the home, or property.
How do I calculate the value of the work to be performed?
The value of the work performed is the total of:
- Material cost
- Labor value - Homeowners doing the project themselves should assign a fair market value to their own labor.
What is a site plan?
A site plan is a scaled drawing of your property. You must show the placement of all additions to the property. Give dimensions of the house, dimensions of any other structures on the property, and dimensions from each structure to all property lines.
What is Use Tax?
Use tax is a means of guiding your tax dollars to the city and county where you live, where the goods are "used". Your contractor (or you as the homeowner) will present your permit to the building supply stores to acquire the materials for the job. The retailers will not charge city and county sales tax on the material purchases- you (or your contractor) already paid that tax to the city when the permit was acquired. Save your receipts and be careful to make purchases for just the permitted project. Should you be audited, the auditor will compare the use tax paid at the time of the permit application with the tax not charged to you on the materials purchased. There should be no difference if the value of the project was estimated correctly on the permit application.
Where do I get a permit application?
Permit applications are available online at the Building Permits & Inspections page.
Why are all contractors (the electrician, the plumber, the general contractor, etc.) required to be licensed in the City?
Licensed contractors have provided proof of competency and proof of insurance to the city. This protects the homeowner from incurring costs due to damage by uninsured contractors, and it protects the homeowner from contractors who do not have adequate knowledge of the City adopted building codes. A permit will not be issued until all contractors being used to complete the project are licensed. Homeowners doing their own work do not need to be licensed.
What does a permit cost?
1-Stop Permit Costs:
- Permit Fee - Based on the value of the project-see Table 1A
- Douglas County Use Tax - 1% of 50% of the value of the project
- Castle Pines Use Tax - 2.75% of 50% of the value of the project
Plan Review Permit Costs:
All of the above plus-
- Plan Review Fee - 65% of the permit fee
- Electrical Permit FeeBased on the square feet of the project (residential)
- Based on value (commercial)
- Zoning Fee - $50
What forms of payment do you take?
We accept cash, checks or credit card. There is a 2.95% transaction fee for use of credit cards.
May I mail my permit application, plans (if applicable), and check to the City?
The application and subsequent plans must be completed online, but you may mail in your check.
What is the time frame for the permit process?
1-Stop permits are issued once the application has been processed and the fees have been paid in full. Typically, within 24 hours. Permits with plans will have to go through a plan review prior to issuing the permit. All residential plans will be in review for up to 5 days. All commercial plans will be in review for up to 10 days. Please contact the Building Department if you have further questions.
How do I schedule an inspection?
Call the City building department at 303.705.0227 before 4:00 p.m. for a next business day inspection or conveniently schedule at any time through the online portal.
May I request a specific time for an inspection?
You may request an a.m. or p.m. inspection time and we will do our best to accommodate that for you, but there are no guarantees. We cannot give a specific time for your inspection. You may call us at 303.705.0227 after 8:30 a.m. the day of your inspection to obtain your two-hour estimated time of arrival. Please remember we cannot guarantee a requested window.
How do I contact an inspector during the day if I need clarification on his requirements?
Call the Building Department at 303.705.0227 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. and we will contact the inspector to have them call you.
Do permits expire?
Permits are valid for 180 days after issuance. Call 303.705.0227 to renew if you will not complete the project in that timeframe.