Residential

The City of Asheville’s Development Services Department (DSD) helps citizens and developers submit the necessary applications to receive permits for residential projects, including:

Click here for residential permit applications and resources.

Click here for commercial permit applications and resources.

DSD’s Permit Application Center (PAC) is located at 161 South Charlotte Street and open Monday to Friday from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm (closed on public holidays). Customers can also contact PAC@ashevillenc.gov or 828-259-5846 with questions about residential permits.

 

Residential Permit Requirements

Residential permits are not required for construction, alterations, repairs or replacements that will cost fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000) or less in any single-family residence, unless the work involves:

(1) the addition, repair or replacement of load bearing structures;
(2) the addition (excluding same size and capacity) or change in the design of plumbing;
(3) the addition, replacement or change in the design of heating, air conditioning, or electrical wiring, devices, appliances, or equipment; or
(4) the addition (excluding replacement of like grade of fire resistance) of roofing.

If any of these conditions exist, a permit is required. Whether you plan to “do it yourself” or hire a contractor and subcontractors, each trade is required to be permitted.

 

Residential Building Plan Review Waiver

Building code plan review is not required by state law for single family dwellings. DSD provides this compliance review as a service to the public.
Customers may choose to waive the building review service in the following scenarios:

  • The scope of work is limited to interior renovations or re-roof;
  • Work is being done by a licensed General Contractor;
  • Signed and sealed plans and details for this project have been produced under the responsible care of a NC licensed design professional (architect and/or engineer).

The City of Asheville’s Development Services Department (DSD) is, however, obligated by law to maintain accurate plans on record for all permits. Waiver applicants are still required to submit a residential application and accurate, complete building plans to DSD for record keeping purposes. Submission of an incomplete residential application will result in substantial delay in processing an application.

 

Licensed General Contractor Requirements

North Carolina General Statutes require a licensed general contractor for construction where the total cost of the undertaking is $30,000 or more. Under $30,000, a licensed general contractor is not required.

An exception allows a homeowner to act as their own general contractor without a license for the construction of their own home when the cost exceeds $30,000.

As a condition of this exception, the owner and/or immediate family members shall occupy the dwelling for a minimum of 12 months after the job is completed. The dwelling may not be rented, leased or sold during this time period.

 

Plumbing & Mechanical Work Requirements

A homeowner may elect to do his or her own plumbing and/or mechanical work without holding a license in these areas provided that:

  • Plumbing and/or Mechanical permits are obtained;
  • The work is inspected by the plumbing or mechanical inspector; and
  • The owner occupies the dwelling for 12 months after completion of the job

 

Electrical Work Requirements

A homeowner may elect to do his or her own electrical work without holding an electrical contractor’s license provided that:

  • The applicant passes an electrical exam administered by the Building Safety Department;
  • An Electrical Permit is obtained;
  • The work is inspected by the electrical inspector; and
  • The owner occupies the dwelling for 12 months after completion of the job.