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When a Building Permit is Required

  • Construction or demolition of a building or structure.
  • Installations or alterations involving
    • the removal or addition of any wall, partition or portion thereof,
    • any structural component,
    • the repair or replacement of any required component of a fire or smoke rated assembly,
    • the alteration of any required means of egress system,
    • water supply and distribution system, sanitary drainage system or vent system,
    • electric wiring,
    • fire protection system, mechanical systems or fuel supply systems or
    • any equipment regulated by the Virginia Construction Code.
  • For change of occupancy, application for a permit shall be made when a new certificate of occupancy is required. A new certificate of occupancy is required when the change of occupancy requires a greater degree of structural strength, fire protection, means of egress, ventilation or sanitation.
  • Movement of a lot line that increases the hazard to or decreases the level of safety of an existing building or structure in comparison to the building code under which such building or structure was constructed.
  • Removal or disturbing of any asbestos containing materials during the construction or demolition of a building or structure, including additions.


The following are typical home improvements that require a Permit:

  • Additions
  • Attic pull-down stairs
  • Attics, finish existing
  • Basements, build or enlarge
  • Carports, new or enclose existing
  • Decks, new (on footings or posts) or enclose existing
  • Dormers, new
  • Garages
  • Masonry chimneys
  • Porches, new and enclose existing
  • Retaining walls supporting more than 3 feet of unbalanced backfill
  • Sheds, attached to house
  • Sheds or playhouses, detached greater than 256 square feet or more than one story
  • Skylights
  • Swimming pools, greater than 150 square feet, greater than 5,000 gallons and greater than 24 inches deep


First time installation of fixtures and appliances permanently connected to the electrical, mechanical, gas and/or plumbing system(s). This includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Bathtubs
  • Dishwashers
  • Fans, attic/ceiling/exhaust
  • Garbage disposals
  • Heat pumps
  • Hose bibs (exterior hose faucet)
  • Ice makers
  • Laundry tubs
  • Lighting fixtures
  • Electric clothes dryers
  • Electric stoves/ovens
  • Electric water heaters
  • Pressure reducing valves
  • Showers
  • Sinks
  • Smoke alarms/detectors, hard wired
  • Solar energy equipment
  • Sump pumps
  • Toilets
  • Trash compactors
  • Water treatment equipment


New and replacement installations of the following:

  • Centralized air-conditioning systems
  • Gas clothes dryers
  • Gas or oil furnaces
  • Gas or wood stoves or heaters
  • Gas ovens
  • Prefabricated chimneys
  • Prefabricated fireplaces
  • Gas or oil water heaters

Contact Us

Permit Center

Permit Center - West
4301 East Parham Road
Henrico, VA 23228

Permit Center - East
3820 Nine Mile Road
Henrico, VA 23223

(804) 501-7280

[email protected]

Mailing Address
P. O. Box 90775
Henrico, VA 23273-0775

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