Building Permits FAQ

What is my property zoned?
Zoning Map

What can I build/develop on my piece of property?
For major development of a lot, it is recommended that you schedule a DRC meeting. Visit the DRC page for instructions and meeting request form. What you are able to build on your property depends on the intended Use. First determine how your property is zoned. To do this, refer to the City of Fife Zoning Map and to Title 19 of the Fife Municipal Code, to determine if your use is allowed in that zone.

What will my building permit cost?
Use this spreadsheet to estimate the approximate cost of your building permit fees based on square footage, type of construction, and occupancy of your location. The fees calculated here are estimates only. Actual fees due for your project will be reviewed and finalized at application submittal. Building permit fees do not include other fees, charges or permits such as general facility charges, impact fees, mechanical permits, plumbing permits, etc.  Please see the Community Development Fee Schedule for a detailed list of other fees.

If you have any questions, please email or call Community Development Department at 253-922-9625.

Is my permit ready?
Permits are reviewed on a first come, first served basis. If the applicant fails to provide a complete application, the permit can not be reviewed until all necessary information is received. Permit Coordinators will make sure the application is complete at time of application. If further information is needed for review, the applicant will be notified. As soon as the permit is reviewed and approved by staff it is given to the permit coordinators, who will contact you. If there are any additional fees that need to be paid, the permit coordinators will notify you at this time.

How can I schedule an inspection?
Inspections are scheduled weekdays from 8:00a.m. to 3:30p.m.. To schedule an inspection, call (253) 922-9624 by 4:00 PM the day prior to your preferred inspection date.

Inspections can also be requested online at the City of Fife’s Online Permit Center. In order to request an inspection online, you must be a registered user in the Online Permit Center. Create an account by clicking the “Sign Up” link. Please contact support at (253) 922-9625 if you need any assistance using the new Online Permit Center or need to acquire your personal access code.

What is my parcel number?
A parcel number is the most useful item on a permit application. Therefore it is extremely helpful when you can supply it to the permit coordinators on your permit application. To find your parcel number, follow this link to the Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer website. Here you can enter a house number and street to find your parcel number. Make sure the parcel type is a “real” parcel and the parcel status is “active”. Also, by clicking on your parcel number you can find all sorts of handy information such as: building and land value, maps of your property, sale history, building history, and even view and pay your property taxes.

What do I need a building permit for?
There are a lot of reasons to apply for and acquire a building permit. A building permit ensures:

  • The contractors are registered licensed and insured
  • Adequate documentation is prepared to construct your building or extension/alteration
  • Review of building plans and structural calculations occurs
  • Key stages of the work are inspected
  • Your building is assessed as suitable for occupation

Section 105.1 of the 2015 International Building Code regarding required permits reads; “Any owner or 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, gas, mechanical or plumbing system, the installation of which is regulated by this code, or to cause any such work to be done, shall first make application to the building official and obtain the required permit.”

A list of exceptions from the International Building and International Residential Codes can be found here.

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