Accessory Structure Permit

Do I need a permit?

Residential accessory structures, including non-habitable storage sheds, workshops, gazebos, cabanas, and similar non-habitable structures, greater than 120 square feet require a permit.

A structure may be exempt from building permit requirements if the structure does not exceed a floor area of 120 square feet. Even though a permit may not be required, all structures must meet Municipal Code Planning and Zoning requirements for use, placement on the parcel, and design. Any electrical, mechanical, or plumbing work associated with accessory structures also requires a permit (whether it is 120 square feet or not).

How do I get an approval to be exempt? / How do I get this permit?

  • Approvals for exempted structures can be obtained by submitting plans (two sets) including the site plan, elevation, and floor plans.
  • Permits for non-exempted structures can be obtained by submitting an application, Owner-Builder Verification Form (if required), and plans (three sets) for review, including:
    • Site plan
    • Elevation
    • Floor plan
    • Structural plans
    • Structural calculations, if required
Bring these documents to the Development Services Center. To schedule an appointment, call 510-494-4461 for an over-the-counter plan review.

How much does it cost?

Please see the Building Permit Fee Schedule.

What do I do once I get this permit?

For exempted structures, you may proceed with the work once you have received Planning and Zoning approval. For non-exempted structures, you may begin work once the permit is issued.

The permit, approved plans, and inspection record must be at the job site for the inspector to review. Inspections are required at certain phases of the construction project and the owner and/or contractor are responsible for requesting these inspections. Typically, the first inspection is the foundation excavation inspection and the work is considered complete once the final inspection is approved.


This permit information can change at any time. Please contact the Development Services Center for the most current information.