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Construction

A business that creates and buildings, structures, infrastructure, or other types of real property such as bridges, dams, and roads.

Required

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Obtain a Business Income and Receipts Tax ID

Every individual, partnership, association and corporation doing business in Philadelphia must file a Business Income and Receipts Tax Return in whether or not they earned a profit during the preceding year. Rental activities are usually considered business activities.

Obtain an Activity License

An Activity License is required for all businesses and non-profits operating in Philadelphia. This includes businesses that are located outside the city limits but do some or all of their business activity in the City.

Contractor and Permit Requirements

The following information must be submitted with all permit applications. Permit applications will not be accepted without these documents.

Contractor License

A Contractor's License is required of any professional contractor who performs work in which the contractor receives payment of $500 or more. Applicants must annually reapply for this license and submit proof of a surety bond.

Special Inspections Program

For Engineering Services, Construction Services, Emergency Services, this procedure establishes the minimum requirements necessary to safeguard the public health, safety and general welfare through structural strength, stability, and safety to life and property from fire and other hazards.

Zoning and Use

The Philadelphia Zoning Code regulates development within the city. Zoning regulations govern land use, the height and size of buildings, population density, parking requirements, signage placement and the character of development on private property, and property uses.

Documents You May Need

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Building Permits

Building permits are required before beginning projects to enlarge, repair, change, add to or demolish a structure, and to install equipment or systems in a structure.

EZ Permits

EZ Permits are permits that Do Not Require the Submission of Plans

Alterations Permit

To obtain a Building Permit for alterations, gather the materials listed below and submit a completed permit application in-person at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) Concourse.

New Construction and Additions Permit

To obtain a Building Permit for new construction or an addition, gather the materials listed below and submit a completed permit application in-person at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) Concourse.

New Construction and Additions Permit

To obtain a Building Permit for new construction or an addition, gather the materials listed below and submit a completed permit application in-person at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) Concourse.

Remediation of a Dangerous Condition Requires a Building Permit

A Building Permit is required to perform reconstruction work on a building that has experienced deterioration of a portion of its major structural elements, such as floor joists, exterior walls, or roofing elements.

Mechanical Permit

To obtain a Mechanical Permit, gather the materials listed below and submit a completed permit application in-person at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) Concourse.

Does the Historical Commission Affect You?

The Philadelphia Historical Commission (PHC) is the regulatory agency responsible for ensuring the preservation of historically significant buildings, structures, sites, objects, interiors and districts in the City of Philadelphia.

Does the Art Commission Affect You?

Philadelphia’s Art Commission is a charter-mandated design review board for architecture and public art.

Certificate of Occupancy

A Certificate of Occupancy is required as a condition of a change in the use and occupancy of a space in accordance with the International Building Code. Certificates of Occupancy are also required for all new construction and building additions.

Dumpster License - Construction

This license is require for any dumpster utilized for storing all construction related debris. The company that owns the dumpster must apply for this license.  There is a separate placement license necessary for the entity leasing the dumpster.  The lessee permit is available from the Streets Department and will be issued for a defined time period.

Electrical Contractor License

Prior Approvals: Pass the Electrical Contractor Examination

Electrical Permit

Only a licensed Electrical Contractor can apply for an electrical permit from the City.

Foundation Only Building Permit

A separate Foundation Permit is not required. However the builder may elect to obtain a separate permit.

Foundation Only Building Permit

A separate Foundation Permit is not required. However the builder may elect to obtain a separate permit.

Expediter's License

An Expediter License is required for any person who is paid for obtaining licenses, permits and certificates for another person.

Cooking Extinguishing Systems

To obtain a Cooking Extinguishing System Permit, gather the materials listed below and submit a completed permit application in-person at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) Concourse at 1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd.

Tank Permits

To obtain a construction permit for the installation, removal or insertion of a tank to gather or hold the materials listed below and submit a completed permit application in-person at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) Concourse.

Hazardous Materials License

This license is required for the storage, dispensing, use, or handling of hazardous material.

Handbill Distribution License

This license is required for any distributor, distribution business, or person, who distributes commercial handbills on sidewalks, in public places, or door-to-door.

Outdoor Advertising Sign License

This license is required for having large outdoor signs, such as billboards. The license does not apply to accessory business signs.