FAQs - Growth Management
How do I know if I need a building permit?
A: The answer is you probably do. A building permit is required 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 required impact-resistant coverings, electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system. There are exceptions allowed for general maintenance work that is non-structural in nature. It would be best to contact Growth Management's Building Inspection Division at (850) 891-7050 to determine if a building permit is required for your specific project.
How do I find out if my property is in a flood zone?
A: By logging on to www.tlcgis.com you can search your property on I-Maps, by address or parcel identification number. You can view your property and its proximity to the 100-year flood zone. The flood zones show as blue or red hatched areas. You may also call 891-7100 and staff will look it up for you.
How do I find the City of Tallahassee's codes and requirements?
A: The Tallahassee Code of Ordinances can be found here. After clicking on the link, you will be directed to the Tallahassee Municipal Code Corporation website. On the left hand side of the screen you can scroll to all of the City's codes and requirements.
How do I know if my property will require a stormwater pond?
A: Unless there is an existing stormwater facility that has capacity reserved for your project the answer is probably yes. If your project is small (with a minimal amount of impervious) you might be able to use swales and berms to direct the stormwater to an approved public conveyance.
How do I know if I need a permit to put up a fence on my property?
A: The City of Tallahassee does not issue permits for fences. However, if a fence has concrete or brick columns with a footer type foundation, this may require a review by the Building Inspection Division. Additionally, if the property is zoned Historic Preservation Overlay (HPO), approval from the Architectural Review Board (ARB) is required. If you would like to determine whether your property is zoned HPO, click on www.tlcgis.com to utilize our zoning maps. If your property is located in the HPO zoning district and you have questions about the ARB application process, please contact Mike Wing, Executive Director of the Tallahassee Trust for Historic Preservation at (850) 488-7334.
If your property is a corner lot, there is a minimum site triangle that must remain free of all structures, including fences. The purpose of the site triangle is to preserve visibility for traffic safety purposes. It is recommended that you contact Growth Management's Land Use and Environmental Services Division (850) 891-7100 and ask to speak with a Planner to verify that the proposed fence location meets the minimum site triangle requirement. Also, you may need to investigate the conditions of your plat or homeowner's association documents, since these typically contain specific language related to the placement of fences, especially in easements.
How do I find out if I need a permit to cut down a tree in my yard?
A: If a tree on your single-family residence is 36" in Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) or less, you do not need a permit to remove it. Removal of a tree over 36" DBH may require a permit depending on the health and condition of the tree.
How do I find the fees associated with permitting?
A: Permitting fees vary depending on the project size and the type of permit. You can view the City's development review fees specific to your project at Talgov.com (PDF).
How do I know if I need a contractor?
A: A Florida licensed contractor is required for the construction of new buildings, alteration, repairs and additions to existing buildings. Permits are issued to Florida licensed contractors and qualifying owner builders as described below. To check to see if a contractor is licensed in Florida please contact the Building Inspection Division office or visit the Department of Business and Professional Regulation website: https://www.myfloridalicense.com/wl11.asp You can obtain permits for and construct your own residence as long as the following criteria as stated in Florida Statute, Chapter 489, Section 489.103(7) as follows: Owners of property when acting as their own contractor and providing direct, onsite supervision themselves of all work not performed by licensed contractors, when building or improving farm outbuildings or one-family or two-family residences on such property for the occupancy or use of such owners and not offered for sale or lease, or building or improving commercial buildings, at a cost not to exceed $75,000, on such property for the occupancy or use of such owners and not offered for sale or lease. In an action brought under this part, proof of the sale or lease, or offering for sale or lease, of any such structure by the owner-builder within 1 year after completion of same creates a presumption that the construction was undertaken for purposes of sale or lease. This subsection does not exempt any person who is employed by or has a contract with such owner and who acts in the capacity of a contractor. The owner may not delegate the owner's responsibility to directly supervise all work to any other person unless that person is registered or certified under this part and the work being performed is within the scope of that person's license. For the purposes of this subsection, the term "owners of property" includes the owner of a mobile home situated on a leased lot. To qualify for exemption under this subsection, an owner must personally appear and sign the building permit application. The local permitting agency shall provide the person with a disclosure statement in substantially the following form.
Disclosure Statement: State law requires construction to be done by licensed contractors. You have applied for a permit under an exemption to that law. The exemption allows you, as the owner of your property, to act as your own contractor with certain restrictions even though you do not have a license. You must provide direct, onsite supervision of the construction yourself. You may build or improve a one-family or two-family residence or a farm outbuilding. You may also build or improve a commercial building, provided your costs do not exceed $75,000. The building or residence must be for your own use or occupancy. It may not be built or substantially improved for sale or lease. If you sell or lease a building you have built or substantially improved yourself within 1 year after the construction is complete, the law will presume that you built or substantially improved it for sale or lease, which is a violation of this exemption. You may not hire an unlicensed person to act as your contractor or to supervise people working on your building. It is your responsibility to make sure that people employed by you have licenses required by state law and by county or municipal licensing ordinances. You may not delegate the responsibility for supervising work to a licensed contractor who is not licensed to perform the work being done. Any person working on your building who is not licensed must work under your direct supervision and must be employed by you, which means that you must deduct F.I.C.A. and withholding tax and provide workers' compensation for that employee, all as prescribed by law. Your construction must comply with all applicable laws, ordinances, building codes, and zoning regulations.
How do I find the Construction Codes Used by the City of Tallahassee?
A: The Construction Codes used by the City of Tallahassee are located on the GM Codes page of Talgov.com.
How do I find where to pull a Growth Management permit?
A: Renaissance Center
435 N. Macomb Street
Tallahassee, FL 32301