Additions & Conversion to Habitable Space

A Building Permit is required for additions to existing structures or conversion of non-habitable space to habitable space within residential buildings, commercial, institutional or industrial structures. Depending on the scope of the work, review from the Bureau of Planning may be required prior to submitting for a Building Permit.

Date Posted: June 16th, 2021 @ 6:28 PM
Last Updated: January 4th, 2022 @ 5:08 PM

When Is a Permit Required?

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Zoning review is required for any project that includes exterior alteration or conversions to habitable space. A Building Permit is required for all additions or conversion to habitable space. For projects involving less than three units, separate Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing (MEP) applications are not required, but a full description of any MEP to be performed must be included in the same application.

How to Apply


Ready to get started? First, make sure you are registered and activated at our Online Permit Center. For instructions, please visit our Planning & Building Video Tutorials webpage.

STEP ONE: Zoning Review

  • Submit a Zoning Worksheet through our Online Permit Center
  • In the Worksheet, upload your completed Basic Application for Development Review* and all required plans and associated documents
    * Please note that Additions & Conversions are distinct from new living units.
  • A planner will review your submission
  • Once approved, you will receive an acknowledgment from Planning staff

STEP TWO: Building Permit

  • Submit a Building Worksheet through our Online Permit Center
  • In the Worksheet, upload your completed Building Permit Application, including a description of all Mechanical, Electrical or Plumbing (MEP) work to be performed, and all documents as required by the Submittal Checklist for Additions and Alterations (please note: a stamp is required if prepared by a design professional)

Refer to the following forms and checklists as applicable:


Once we receive your application and have created it in our system, we will review your plans. If your plans require corrections or if we need further information, we will contact you. If your plans are approved, we will contact you to issue your permit. For the latest processing estimates, please see our Average Permit Processing Turnaround Times webpage.


Call (510) 238-3891 or find quick answers through our Permit Questions Portal.

Additional Resources