Building Permit Information


The following work requires a building permit: 

  • Site built residence
  • Single or double wide manufactured (mobile) home
  • Industrialized (modular) home
  • Accessory structure over 144 square feet (typical structure types include carports, storage buildings, pole barns, and detached garages)
  • Accessory structure less than 144 square feet with permanent foundations (i.e. concrete slab)
  • Accessory structure less than 144 square feet that will require utilities (i.e. electricity or plumbing)
  • Addition to a structure
  • Moving, removing, or adding exterior walls
  • Adding, enlarging, or replacing an arbor, pergola, porch, deck, or deck covering
  • Enclosing a porch, deck, or carport
  • Cutting a new window or door opening, or widening or reducing the size of an existing opening
  • Constructing retaining wall that exceeds four feet in height as measured above ground
  • Installing a fence over seven feet in height
  • Replacing roof decking, making structural roof changes, or replacing shingles with metal

Process for Applying for a Building Permit

Step 1

Visit the Planning Department to obtain a Zoning Verification form. You will need to have a copy of the property's recorded plat, a to-scale site plan (PDF), a copy of the deed if you purchased the property within the last 12 months, and an Authorization of Property Owner form (PDF)if the applicant is not the property owner. If you need a copy of the recorded plat, visit the Deeds and Records Officelocated at 116 Spring Street in Gainesville. See the following site plan checklist and example for the minimum required elements to be shown on the site plan (PDF)

Step 2

Visit the Environmental Health Department for review and/or approval. Additional requirements, fees, and/or waiting period may apply. 

Step 3

Visit the Building Inspections Department to have the building permit issued. Additional requirements, fees, and/or waiting period may apply. 

Contact Information

Environmental Health Department:

  • 2875 Browns Bridge Road
    3rd Floor
    Gainesville, GA 30504
    Phone: 770-531-3973

Building Inspections Department:

  •  2875 Browns Bridge Road
    3rd Floor
    Gainesville, GA 30504
    Phone: 770-531-6809, option 1

Site Plan Checklist

  • North arrow
  • Adjacent street names
  • Lot dimensions and building setback limits
  • Location and dimensions of easements, driveway(s), state waters, stream buffers, wetlands, and flood plains
  • Footprint of proposed and existing structures (including decks, porches, and roof overhangs over 2'-6") with dimensions of proposed structures
  • Dimensions of shortest distances from proposed structures to all property lines and between all structures
  • Location of wells and/or septic systems. Contact Environmental Health for septic/well site plan requirements
  • Drawn to an engineer's scale at a minimum of 1 inch = 10 feet and a maximum of 1 inch = 100 feet, and show graphic scale on plan
  • Minimum one (1) copy of site plan if paper size is 11" x 17" or less; minimum two (2) copies of site plan if paper size is larger than 11" x 17". Site plan must be printed to-scale
  • Allow sufficient white space for County approval stamps and notes

Print the Building Permit Checklist (PDF)

See an example of a to-scale Site Plan (PDF)

Print the Authorization of Property Owners Form (PDF)