The Community Development and the Building Inspections Offices work hard to make sure our city is safe, smart, and well-built.  We are here and happy to help with the first step in all your building projects; no matter how big or small! 

Building inspections Office Hours: Monday - Thursday 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Office Phone Number: (540) 261-8635
office Staff available by phone or text on fridays 
at (540) 784-8878, and by email at:

Building Permits

For a downloadable building permit application form, in PDF,  click here for the Forms and Permits page.

For questions about building permits and building regulations, please contact the City Building Official, Alan McMahan,  at either or (540) 261-8635.

New buildings and additions to existing buildings require a Zoning Construction Permit before obtaining a Building Permit. Commercial buildings and large developments may require a Site Plan and/or and Erosion and Sediment Control Plan. See the Planning & Zoning web page.

Department of Housing and Community Development Division of Building and Fire Regulations

Building Code

IMPORTANT:  Section 108.1 of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC) requires that an application for a permit shall be made to the building official and a permit shall be obtained prior to the commencement of any of the following activities, except that applications for emergency construction, alterations or equipment replacement shall be submitted by the end of the first working day that follows the day such work commences.  In addition, the building official may authorize work to commence pending the receipt of an application or the issuance of a permit.

  1. Construction or demolition of a building or structure.  Installations or alterations involving (i) the removal or addition of any wall, partition or portion thereof, (ii) any structural component, (iii) the repair or replacement of any required component of a fire or smoke rated assembly, (iv) the alteration of any required means of egress system, (v) water supply and distribution system, sanitary drainage system or vent system, (vi) electric wiring, (vii) fire protection system, mechanical systems, or fuel supply systems, or (viii) any equipment regulated by the USBC.
  2. For change of occupancy, application for a permit shall be made when a new certificate of occupancy is required by the VEBC (Virginia Existing Building Code).
  3. Movement of a lot line that increases the hazard to or decreases the level of safety of an existing building or structure in comparison to the building code under which such building or structure was constructed.
  4. Removal or disturbing of any asbestos containing materials during the construction or demolition of a building or structure, including additions.

Residential Rental Inspection Program

Residential rental, including apartments and detached houses, is an important part of the City’s housing. In addition to land use regulations that apply to all buildings, the City has established a Rental Inspection Program to ensure minimum health and safety conditions in residential rental units in some parts of the city.

Rental Inspection Program - Program Guide

Rental Inspection Regulations

Seasonal Announcements


The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) encourages everyone to keep safety in mind in order to lessen the chance that a fire will disrupt their holiday celebrations. “For a lot of people, December tops the list for the most heartwarming time of year, but it’s also a leading month for home fires in the U.S.,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of Outreach and Advocacy for NFPA. Decorations, Christmas trees and candles are most likely to cause fire damage during the holidays. To share these tips and resources regarding holiday fire safety, visit NFPA's winter holidays page to learn more.