Per the 2018 International Building Code and the 2018 International Residential Code: any owner or owner's authorized agent who intends to construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, demolish, or change the occupancy of a building or structure, or to erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert, or replace any electrical, mechanical, or plumbing system, the installation of which is regulated by the code, or to cause any such work to be performed, shall first make application to the Building Official and obtain the required permits.
Permits are required for including but not limited to:
*** If you are unsure if your project falls into one of the categories listed above which requires a permit, please contact the Building Department to inquire BEFORE you start any work. Stop Work Orders may be issued and penalty fees may apply for work started without obtaining required permits. ***
Note: Electric utility companies will not connect electrical service for a structure without an electrical permit. You must obtain a permit for the structure before you can obtain an electrical permit.
*For accessory structures, the only exceptions to the permit requirements are as follows:
**For manufactured homes/mobile homes, permits are required for the installation and set up of the home as well as for any outside electrical work (such as installation of new electrical service or alteration/repair/upgrade of existing electrical service). Only Zone II manufactured/mobile homes are allowed to be setup or re-setup in Baldwin County. The Baldwin County Building Department does not permit or inspect manufactured homes for roofing, mechanical/HVAC, plumbing, or interior alterations/repairs. For additional information, please refer to the section below titled "What info do I need to apply for a Mobile Home Permit?" You should also contact the Alabama Manufactured Housing Commission to determine their regulations and requirements.
Make sure to hire properly licensed contractors! Property owners should always ask to see the contractor's licenses! Here are requirements you should check for:
TRADE CONTRACTORS (ELECTRICAL, MECHANICAL/HVAC, AND PLUMBING):
MOBILE HOME INSTALLATION CONTRACTORS:
FOR RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION:
FOR NON-RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION:
Permits are still required even if the property owner does all the work and does not hire a contractor.
FOR TRADE PERMITS:
Property owners can perform their own electrical, mechanical, and plumbing work. However, you should obtain separate permits for each of those trades prior to starting the work.
Although the Baldwin County Building Department does not currently require or issue permits for gas fitting, you should still follow the guidelines of the State of Alabama Plumbers & Gas Fitters Examining Board. Property owners should not perform their own gas fitting work. Gas fitting work should be performed only by contractors who hold an active Master Gas Fitter license from the Alabama Plumbers & Gas Fitters Examining Board.
FOR RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION:
State law requires residential construction to be performed by a licensed residential home builder. The property owner can request an exemption to that law. This exemption allows the owner of the property to act as his/her own builder even though he/she does not have a license.
You may build or improve your own residence, but it must be for your use and occupancy. It may not be built or improved for the purposes of selling. If you place the residence for sale within one year after the construction is complete, the law will presume that you built it for sale, which is a violation of this exemption.
You may not hire or compensate anyone to supervise the building or improvement of the residence. It is your responsibility to make sure that subcontractors employed by you have the proper licenses required by state law and a State of Alabama business license issued through any county in the state. Your construction must comply with all applicable laws, ordinances, building codes, and zoning regulations.
By claiming exempt status, the property owner waives his/her rights for protection under the provisions of the Home Builders Licensure law. In the event of litigation involving activities resulting from the granting of a permit, the property owner may not make demand of any money from the Homeowner's Recovery Fund, established by the Home Builders Licensure law.
To qualify for this exemption, the property owner must review, complete, and return the Sworn Statement of Party Claiming Exemption from the Requirements of the Home Builders Licensure Law to the Building Department before the permit is issued.
FOR NON-RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION:
Property owners are exempt from the licensing requirements of the State of Alabama General Licensure Law pursuant to Section 34-8-1 when acting as their own contractor and providing all materials and supervision for the construction. Any of the work contracted out must comply with the definition in this chapter for general contractor. Section 34-8-7 (a)(3). The property owner should be fully aware of the State Laws, and remain in compliance with the requirements for exemption to permit as an owner. Section 34-8-9 (amended 2006).
can be submitted online in the
Citizenserve Portal or in person at a Building Department office. Depending
on the type of project and the project location, the information and documents
below may be required with the submittal of your application. A Permit
Technician can assist you with determining the specific requirements for your
Parcel Number – search online at open.baldwincountyal.gov, click on Property Appraisal Information; or locate on the property tax bill; or contact local Revenue Commissioner office: North Baldwin 251-937-0245; South Baldwin 251-972-6819; Eastern Shore 251-990-4627
Address Verification Letter – required for all new construction; must first have parcel number, then submit request for the letter online at www.baldwin911.org
Proof of Ownership – a copy of the current tax bill or the recorded deed; search online for deeds at open.baldwincountyal.gov, click on Probate Deeds & Records
Property Owner Information - names listed on property deed, mailing address, phone number, email address
Contractor Information - business name, mailing address, phone number, email address, copy of contractor license (if applicable), copy of State of Alabama business license
Detailed Scope of Work - detailed description of work to be done, methods to be used, materials to be used, etc.
Job Valuation – the cost of labor and material for the project. Only include valuation for the specific type of permit; for example, for a Building Permit for a new house - do not include the cost of electrical, mechanical, and plumbing because those will be separate permits.
Zoning - Site Plan Approval (also known as a Land Use Certificate) - required for any property located in a zoned area if any structure will be added to the property, if square footage will be added to or modified on an existing structure, or if there will be a change in the use of an existing structure. There may be other projects that require a Site Plan Approval/Land Use Certificate as well. Determine if a property is zoned and if a Site Plan Approval is required by contacting the appropriate Planning & Zoning Dept. The Land Use Certificate must be applied for and issued BEFORE applying for the building permit.
Unzoned Land Disturbance Permit – required for any project located in an unzoned area that is also in a flood zone and/or a potential wetland area.
Construction Plans – refer to adopted building codes and supplemental code for additional information; must be drawn to scale; provided in a digital PDF format:
Site Plan - must be drawn to scale; must indicate footprint of all existing structures as well as the proposed structure (with dimensions); must include all distances from property lines and from other structures on property, etc.
Driveway Permit - confirmation from appropriate authority that culvert has been applied for, is existing, is not required, or is not county maintained:
Sewer Release or Health Department Release:
Use of Building and/or Storage Area - what the building will be used for and what will be stored in the storage areas
Any additional documentation that has been deemed necessary by the Building Department.
Structures located in a Flood Zone or in a Floodway must meet the Baldwin County Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance and Flood Zone Requirements.
The following additional documents apply for structures located in a Flood Zone:
The following additional documents apply for structures located in a Floodway:
The following additional requirements/documents apply for certain conditions or project locations:
• Before an electrical permit for a mobile home installation can be issued, the property owner or contractor must first obtain a Mobile Home Permit.
• No mobile home should be installed until after a Mobile Home Permit has been issued.
• Only Zone II manufactured/mobile homes are allowed to be setup or re-setup in Baldwin County.
• The manufactured/mobile home installer must hold a license from the Alabama Manufactured Housing Commission (no homeowners are allowed to install or setup). This is a state and federal law; the Baldwin County Commission has adopted the enforcement of the regulations.
• For information concerning Zone II classification or to verify licensed installers, please contact the Alabama Manufactured Housing Commission at 334-242-4036 or online at www.amhc.alabama.gov.
• Permits are not required for re-roofing, plumbing, mechanical/HVAC, exterior windows/doors/siding, or interior alterations/repairs of mobile homes.
• Permits are required for additions, decks/porches, handrails/guardrails, stairs, and accessory structures such as carports, storage buildings, pole barns, etc.
You may apply for permits online in the Citizenserve Portal or visit one of our office locations.
Depending on the type of project and the project location, the information and documents below may be required with the submittal of your application. A Permit Technician can assist you with determining the specific requirements for your project.
For a structure located in a Flood Zone, click to review the Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance and Flood Zone Requirements. The following additional documents apply:
For a structure located in a Floodway, the following additional document applies:
The following additional requirements apply for certain locations or conditions:
Permits are valid for 180 days after the issue date. If no inspections are performed within the 180 days, the permit will expire. Each time an inspection is performed, the permit expiration date is extended and the 180 days starts over again.
Here are options you may choose from to keep your permit file active or to close your file: