Skip to main content

SDCI offices are closed to the public.

Most services are available online through our Virtual Applicant Services Center. We offer limited access to our offices for scheduled public meetings.

Construction Without a Permit

See also: Land Use Code

What Is It?

A black man is told to stop work because he didn't have a permit.You need to get a permit for most construction projects that involve:

We may issue a stop work order against you if you start a building, addition, or remodeling project without a permit. If you build without a permit or fail to get a final inspection approval, we may fine you or take other enforcement action against you.

What It Isn’t

This page does not cover projects that do not need a permit; see Do You Need a Permit? You can find a list of permit exceptions in the Seattle Residential Code (SRC) and the Seattle Building Code (SBC).

Rules to Follow

Our ordinances require that you get a construction permit for projects that involve new construction, renovation, or alterations of buildings.

If you need help determining if you need a construction permit for your project, contact the Applicant Services Center to get help from a permit specialist. You will need:

  • The address
  • A sketch showing existing structures on the property, with dimensions and distances to property lines
  • A proposal of your project

Read the Code

Fines

If you build without a permit, you may be fined up to $500 per day.

Construction and Inspections

Nathan Torgelson, Director
Address: 700 5th Ave, Suite 2000, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 34019, Seattle, WA, 98124-4019
Phone: (206) 684-8600
Phone Alt: Violation Complaint Line: (206) 615-0808
Contact Us

Newsletter Updates

Subscribe

Sign up for the latest updates from Construction and Inspections

SDCI issues land use, construction, and trade permits, conducts construction and housing-related inspections, ensures compliance with our codes, and regulates rental rules. SDCI is committed to an antiracist workplace and to addressing racism through our work in the community.