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Building Plans Review

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What kind of work requires a building permit?

A. Any time a building greater than 100 square feet in size is erected, altered, added to, or demolished, a permit is required. Building permits also are required for piers, bulkheads, retaining walls, swimming pools over 250 square feet, fences over 42 inches high, and accessory buildings. Further information may be obtained by contacting Permit Processing at 410-887-3900 or Zoning Review at 410-887-3391.

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Q. What do I need to apply for a permit?

A. You will need a site plan (two to ten copies, depending on the type of work) drawn to scale and showing what you intend to build and how it is to be situated on the property. Construction plans (two sets) are required for buildings over 1,000 square feet and additions over 600 square feet. Commercial permit applications require a Plan Review Data Sheet (PDF) (three copies). Major work and commercial work requires these plans be sealed by an architect or engineer. You also will need the tax account number of the property; you can look that up when you get here. Call 410-887-3987 for additional information. Important Notice to all Residential Permit Applicants

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Q. What building and fire codes do you use?


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Q. What are the local building design requirements in Baltimore County?

    a. footing depth 30 inches; pole buildings 48 inches
    b. minimum snow load 30 psf
    c. design wind speed 75 mph
    d. design wind pressure 14.4 psf
    e. flood protection elevation 10.4 feet (Back River and south)
        11.2 feet (north of Back River)

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Q. How can I get a question or issue concerning permit status, inspection, code, and so forth resolved?

A. Use Inspection Connection to schedule, re-schedule, or inquire about permits 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You may also contact Permit Processing at 410-887-3900 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. For construction or inspection questions, contact the Building Inspections at 410-887-3953. For code questions, contact the Building Plans Review at 410-887-3987 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

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Q. Where can I find information regarding the floodplain?

A. Information regarding the floodplain, including guidelines, codes, forms and frequently asked questions is available in PDF and may be downloaded for reviewing or printing.

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Revised June 26, 2015

Revised April 6, 2016         


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