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Frequently Asked Questions


When is a building permit required?

The following are typical projects that require a building permit:

  • To alter, construct, repair, move or demolish, or change occupancy of a building or structure.
  • To build a STORAGE SHED in excess of 120 sq.ft. and/or if the shed has any electrical or plumbing installed.
  • To build a FENCE greater than seven feet (7′) in height.
  • To build a RETAINING WALL greater than four feet (4′) in height from bottom of foundation to top of wall and/or if it is holding a surcharge.
  • Window frame changes
  • Re-roofing.
  • For any electrical work EXCEPT changing plugs or lights.
  • To replace or install a WATER HEATER.
  • To replace or install a FURNACE.
  • To replace or install GAS, WATER, OR WASTE PIPE.
  • To install a SPA OR HOT TUB.

This list is not all inclusive, and other projects may be subject to the building permit issuance. Contact City Hall for more information. Special Note: Exemption from the permit requirements of the code does not grant authority for any of the work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of the Municipal Code, ordinances or state or federal laws. Please check with the Planning, Engineering & Environmental Compliance Division for any potential code violations prior to starting any work not requiring a building permit, as prior approval or permit from the Planning Division may be necessary.

Where can I obtain a building permit application?

The building permit application form is available at City Hall and on the City’s website (www.sandcity.org).

What are the building permit fees?

Permit fees vary depending upon the type of project (i.e. electrical, plumbing, new construction, etc.). Some projects have flat rate fees, while other projects are based on a project’s assessed valuation. Contact City Hall at 831-394-6700 for more information.

What do I need to do to get a building permit?

Before a building permit can be issued, it needs to be determined whether construction plans must be reviewed for compliance with applicable State and local building codes. For projects where plans are required, the following (at a minimum) must be provided:

  • Six (6) sets of plans, all wet signed/stamped by the architect and/or engineer. All submitted plans must be on sheets no smaller than 11″ x 17″. 8½” x 11″ plan submissions will not be accepted.
  • Four (5) sets of any engineering, structural, energy, geo-technical/soils reports, or other relevant calculations, wet stamped and signed.
  • One (1) CD (or other electric medium) with digital copy of the complete plan set and calculations.
  • One (1) application form completely filled out (available on the City’s website).
  • All fees paid upon submission of application.

What projects do not need plans?

Projects that do not need plans reviewed include, but not limited to, the following:

  • Non-structural re-roofs (no framing, just resurfacing).
  • Replacing electrical panel/meter
  • Replacing electrical outlets
  • Replacing a gas meter

For these projects, a building permit can typically be issued over the counter. Remember,….these project still require building department inspections.

What information should be included on my plans and application?

The following are the minimum information requirements:

  • What is being done.
  • Where it is occurring.
  • How it will be built.
  • A site / plot plan.
  • A foundation plan.
  • Roof & floor framing plans.
  • Construction sections.
  • Appropriate floor plans.
  • Minimum paper size is 11″x17″.
  • Green Building Schedules and Checklists

How long does it take to review my plans?

The typical turn-around time on a plan check review is 31 to 45 working days for a first review, and 21 working days on any secondary reviews (a.k.a. “back checks”). These times may vary depending upon the complexity of a project and its plans.

Who reviews my construction plans?

The City of Sand City contracts with the City of Monterey for Building and Fire Department plan reviews and on-site inspections. Projects that include civil engineering plans are reviewed by the City Engineer. Plans are also reviewed by the City Planner for compliance with zoning and zoning permits. All applications and plans submitted at Sand City City Hall are routed to the various departments (i.e. Building, Fire, Planning, and Engineering) for review and comment. Correction comments are then provided to the applicant.

What additional agency approvals or fees may be required before a building permit can be issued?

It depends upon what the building permit is for. Some projects may require Planning Department zoning/architectural review and approval prior to issuance of a building permit. Some projects may require water and sewer connection permits or be subject to impact fees from regional agencies. Regional Agencies that may be involved prior to issuance of a building permit are:

  • TAMC (for regional transportation impact fees, paid to the City)
  • Monterey Regional Water Pollution Control Agency (for sewer connection permits or waivers) – (831) 372-3367
  • Seaside County Sanitation District (for sewer improvement plans)
  • Monterey Peninsula Water Management District (for water connection permits) – (831) 658-5600
  • Monterey Peninsula Unified School District (for school impact fees) – (831) 645-1240
  • Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District – (for demolitions only) – (831) 647-9411

To determine whether your project is subject to these agencies, contact City Hall.

Do I need a contractor’s license to pull a building permit?

Unless you, as the property owner, are doing the work yourself, you must hold an “active” contractor’s license with the State of California. The City can easily verify on the California Department of Consumer Affairs Contractors State License Board’s website as to whether an individual or company has a California Contractor’s License and if it that license is “active” or “expired”.

How long is my building permit good for once I have it?

Building permits are effective for 180 consecutive days from the time of issuance to the first Building Department inspection. If there is a lapse of 180 days between inspections, a building permit will expire unless discretionarily extended by the City. Additional fees may apply for an extension or renewal of an expired building permit.

Who do I call to schedule an inspection?

The City of Sand City contracts with the City of Monterey’s Building Department for plan check and inspection services. To schedule an inspection, call 831-646-3890. Requests for inspections must be made a minimum of twenty-four (24) hours prior to your desired date/time for an inspection.

Does the contractor doing the work need a Sand City business license?

Yes. All contractors and sub-contractors for any construction work in Sand City are required to have an active Sand City business license. Application forms are available on the City’s website (www.sandcity.org). Contact the Sand City Finance Department at 831-394-3054 for more information.

City Hall : 1 Pendergrass Way, Sand City, CA 93955
Administration Office: (831) 394-3054 - Fax: (831) 394-2472
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