Home Building FAQs: How Long Do Permit Approvals Take?

Home Building FAQs: How Long Do Permit Approvals Take?

I recently started a new blog series answering common home building questions. My goal is to provide you with a quick answer (300 words or less!) to a common question and when I can, give you resources to find more information on the topic. Many of the FAQs I cover are (buried) in other (longer) posts but this will be a quick resource for you!

In earlier posts, I answered the questions: Who applies for the building permits? & What if my plans are rejected by the county? Today I’m answering the question: How Long Do Permit Approvals Take?

This is kind of a loaded question because requirements and time frames are always changing. It really depends on the workload of the particular county at the particular time you are applying for the permit. So the information here is what is happening now. You can always check with your local permit office for current approval times.

For a typical project in Fairfax County (public utilities, no RPA or Flood Zone, no full geotech report required, etc), you can expect your permit to be approved in 4 – 8 weeks. This time frame assumes utility disconnections are completed (and written verification from utility companies are in hand by the time plans are approved) and any special bonds (like VDOT) have been posted. Remember, in order to disconnect the utilities, the house will need to be vacant. So when should you move out? You can check out a previous post about the ideal time to move out of your house to be demolished (READ: there is no ideal time but this is our best advice).

Looking for more information on pulling a building permit? Check out this post which is all about building permits and my advice for surviving the county.

Dream Big. Build Smart.

298 Words = Score!

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