A common question I am asked is, “what work requires a permit”.
The answer is; “California Code of Regulations, Title 24, Building Standards Code require that no building or structure may be erected, constructed, enlarged, altered, repaired, moved, improved, removed, converted or demolished unless a separate permit for each building or structure has been issued. In general, improvements, replacements, and repairs require permits. Exemptions from permitting are allowed for certain work, but vary for each jurisdiction.”
The following, however, are typically exempted:
> fence up to 7 feet high
> minor electrical and plumbing repairs without replacing existing wiring or piping
> painting, wall papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, countertops and similar finish work
> movable fixtures, cases, racks, counters and partitions up to 5 feet 9 inches high without electrical
> one-story detached building used for storage or a children’s playhouse with a floor area up to 120 square feet and without electricity, plumbing, or heating
> retaining wall up to 4 feet high measured from the bottom of the footing to the top of the wall and not supporting a surcharge (sloping ground, foundation, fence, etc.) or hazardous liquids.
“In general, exemption from permitting is not an exemption from constructing the work in compliance with applicable codes. Always check with your Building, Zoning, Fire, Environmental Health (lead paint, asbestos, etc.), and Public Works Departments for their specific requirements.”