Permitting Process General Guidelines
Generally speaking, building permits are required if you are starting a new construction project, remodeling and planning to change the footprint of an original structure, or making any structural changes. Permits types can include:
- Residential or commercial buildings
Before seeking a building permit you should make sure that your project is actually allowed in the area in which you are building. If you are unsure whether your project is allowed or requires a building permit in Santa Rosa County, please call Development Services at 850-981-7000.
Residential plan review assists customers who are constructing, remodeling, or altering a residential structure. Staff from the building inspections, planning and zoning, and floodplain management departments work together to educate customers and enforce the requirements of the Florida Building Code or FBC, Santa Rosa County Land Development Code and other local ordinances. Please visit this link for a checklist of items required to obtain a residential building permit (PDF). Please visit our Forms section for a complete list of all permit applications
Commercial Projects assists customers who are developing commercial or multi-family residential projects. Staff from the Building Inspections, Planning and Zoning and Engineering Departments work together to educate customers and enforce the requirements of the Santa Rosa County Land Development Code and other local ordinances, the Santa Rosa County Comprehensive Plan and the Florida Building Code or FBC, among other regulations.
Know Who You Are Hiring
These projects often increase the value of our homes so we make an extra effort to ensure that they are done properly. If you are going to hire someone to perform the work, a major factor in choosing the right person is ensuring they are properly licensed. Hiring an unlicensed contractor can result in a cease and desist order and fines. Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation has recently increased their efforts at ensuring citizen’s hire licensed professionals. Below are just a few helpful hints.
Warning Signs of an Unlicensed Contractor
- The contract offers a verbal contract only.
- The contractor does not have proof of insurance. A licensed contractor in the Santa Rosa County is required to have workers compensation and general liability insurance.
- The contractor asks you to obtain the permit. The permit holder is held responsible for making any changes needed to pass inspections. If you hold the permit then we expect you to make the corrections.
- The contractor states that a permit is not required. Most often a permit is required except for minor repairs.
- The contractor only provides a copy of a Business Tax Receipt as proof of a license. The State of Florida requires an individual to hold a State Certification, State Registration of Specialty Trade License in the field they are contracting to lawfully engage in contracting. Each will have a wallet card labeled with their name and scope of trade.
For additional information check the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation website.
Follow these steps to protect yourself:
- First, obtain more than one bid for the work you want performed.
- Second, check our website to ensure they are licensed in Santa Rosa County.
- Third, check the business out with the Better Business Bureau.
State & Local Regulations
Please visit the following websites for other necessary approvals as well as state and local regulations which we enforce: