Development Services

Inspection Questions

All construction work for which a Development Services permit is required shall be subject to inspection by authorized city inspectors. It is your responsibility to notify the inspector when the work is ready for inspection. Work is generally inspected and approved in succession and no work may continue beyond the point indicated in each successive inspection without first obtaining the approval of the inspector. Common items to be inspected are foundation excavations, concrete work, wood framing, ventilation equipment, plumbing, electrical, shear wall nailing, roof nailing etc. When completed, there shall be a final inspection and approval of the completed project.

Any work which requires a permit will require inspections. When a permit is received, an Inspection Report Card will be issued. This card must be posted on the job site. The plans which were approved by the Department of Development Services must also be available during each inspection.

The cost of a building inspection is included in the permit fee. However, there may be a $192.37 reinspection fee assessed if an inspection call is made but the work is not ready for inspection or required corrections have not been completed. A reinspection fee may also be charged if the approved plans are not available or the inspector cannot gain access to the site to perform the inspection.

There are a number of general steps in the process for obtaining permits and inspection approvals.

NOTE: Keep in mind that this is only a general outline of the permit and inspection process. Some projects have additional requirements, such as A.Q.M.D. or Harbor Department approvals, Public Works permits, additional fees for transportation or parks improvement. You should be notified of the additional requirements no later than initial plan review.

The property owner or authorized agent for the owner, or the contractor should:

  • Prepare plans, also known as blueprints, for the proposed construction.
  • Prepare and submit an application for the disciplines required to be permitted.
  • Submit the construction plans to the Building Bureau located in the Development Services Center.
  • Pay plan review fees.

After submittal, the Building Bureau staff will:

  • Review the plans submitted for compliance with applicable codes and State Law.

The plans will either be approved and ready for permit issuance or the plan checker will prepare and issue a set of corrections that are required to be made to the plans before permit issuance.

If corrections were issued, the property owner or authorized agent for the owner, or the contractor should correct the plans and resubmit to the Building Bureau for review and approval.

If the plans are approved, the property owner or authorized agent for the owner, or the contractor should:

  • Return to the Development Services Center to obtain the approved plans.
  • Return proof of other Department approvals, if required.
  • Obtain the permit and an Inspection Record Card for posting at the site.
  • Pay the cashier for the permit fees and any other applicable fees.
  • Begin construction.

At various stages of construction, the property owner or authorized agent for the owner, or the contractor should:

  • Obtain inspections for compliance with the approved plans.
  • Call for inspections should always be made before the work is concealed.

All approvals are recorded on the Inspection Record card to track construction progress.

When the work is completely finished the property owner or authorized agent for the owner, or the contractor should:

  • Review the work and make sure that it is ready for a final inspection.
  • Go online or telephone for an inspection.

Meet the inspector at the property address on the following business day between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. for the inspection.
For the final inspection, the inspector will:

  • Make a final inspection, reviewing the progress made since the last inspection and review all work completed to ensure safety for occupancy and connection of utility services.
  • If there are no corrections the inspector will approve the work and will authorize the connection of utility services.
  • Issue a Certificate of Occupancy to the property owner.

A Certificate of Occupancy (CofO) is issued pursuant to a building permit for new construction, additions, and changes of occupancy after all the necessary construction has been approved by the inspector. It is evidence that the Department of Development Services has determined that the construction was done in accordance to the requirements of the code for the given occupancy(ies).

If the building official finds that no substantial hazard will result from the occupancy of any building, or portion thereof, before the same is completed, and satisfactory evidence is submitted that the work could not have been completed prior to the time such occupancy is desired because of its magnitude or because of unusual construction difficulties, and where applicable the City Engineer or duly authorized representative has reported that all required public improvements have been completed, the Building Official may issue a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCOO) for any building or portion thereof. Please see Long Beach Municipal Code section 18.16.180 for more details.