As a professional commercial architect I am often asked about getting building plans approved. In my experience the best way to get a plan approved is by showing it to the local government first. The reason for this is that the architectural drawings and plans are public information and can be viewed by the public. You do not want to get a design plan approved without showing it to the zoning office first, as they have final authority over all architectural design plans.
The Process of Getting Plans Approved
Before getting building plans approved I always check with my city, village or town planning office first. This can take a few days or a week depending on how far out you are and what you are trying to accomplish. The first step to getting building plans approved is to gain an understanding about when these permits may be required. The rule of thumb is if there are easy interior cosmetic changes such as new doors, windows, or skylights being added, then no permit is needed.
Once you have had a chance to talk to your local zoning office, it is time to submit your building plans for review. The first thing I recommend doing is using a good building relaxation attorney. These highly skilled attorneys know all the rules and regulations that will be important for your plan submission to the zoning office. They also understand the complicated technical issues of building permits. I recommend using a commercial construction company or commercial architect if you cannot find a good commercial construction attorney in your area.
Submit Plans to the Building Department
Next you should submit your plans for house or commercial construction. I suggest using a professional house construction company, because if there is a mistake made with the house construction drawings then the inspector can point it out. The house construction drawings will include the material list, amount of materials needed, and all other specifications for the house project. Having an accurate material list is extremely important to getting house construction approval. A house plan app is extremely helpful in this situation.
Once you have done all of this preparation work, it is time to submit your plans for house construction. Again, I recommend using a commercial construction company or architect if you are not sure which way to go. Make sure that you have all of your paperwork completed, and that your commercial building inspector does his job thoroughly. If you submit the building plan incorrectly, you could pay the price again for re-planning. A house plan app makes life much easier, but it is only one tool in the process. Commercial construction experience is definitely important.
The third step in getting building plans approved is to submit your plans to your local board. This may include a letter of authorization from the local zoning board, or it may include a separate application. Either way, make sure that you include all relevant information and that the application is complete and accurate.
Inspection of Building Plans
The fourth step in the process is having your plans inspected. Most of the time, building permits are issued before plans are even considered. You want to make sure that your plans are not too big or too small, so that they are sure to be accepted. Have your plans inspected by experts who can tell you if there is anything that needs to be added, revised, or re-done. Your local officials should be able to help you with this.
The fifth and final step is simply to wait it out. Building permits take time to get. Houses are very expensive, so do not expect to start getting building plans approved immediately. Building a house or office is a big job, and it is not something that you can just “start” working on. If you follow all of the other advice in this article, you should be fine.