City of Pittsfield
Building Inspectors Department - 10 Fenn Street - Phone: (413) 499-9440 Fax: (413) 499-9444
ONLINE PERMITTING SYSTEM GUIDELINES
The Massachusetts State Building Code, 780 CMR, divides permitting into two categories:
- One-family or Two-family homes
- All other buildings or structures
For your convenience, effective July 13, 2015, the City of Pittsfield has adopted online permitting for the submittal of applications for residential and commercial building permits, sheet metal permits, plumbing and gas permits and electrical permits.
Paper permit applications will no longer be accepted as of October 1, 2015. If you do not own a computer or if you need assistance using a computer, both are available. A computer station terminal is located on the mezzanine level of 100 North Street, immediately to the right upon entering the Health Department. Assistance can be obtained in the office or by contacting the Building Inspectors office at (413) 499-9440 during normal business hours. Office hours are Monday –Friday 7:30am-3:00pm.
- Applicants will no longer have to obtain signatures from other departments when submitting a permit application, however, should plans require review by the City of Pittsfield Fire Department, Health Department, Planning Department, Conservation Commission or Water & Sewer Department and cannot be uploaded with the online application, they must physically be brought to the Building Inspectors, who will distribute said plans to those applicable departments.
- Applicants can pay for their permit online with their Visa, Master Card, Discover, Amex, or debit from a checking account.
APPLICANTS WHO REGISTER, (this takes less than 5 minutes) will benefit by the following:
- Much of the information will auto-fill on the permit application after your original registration.
- Have an ability to view the status of their application and comments from other departments, including whether additional information is required.
- Edit an application before the permit is issued.
- Add attachments (plans, pictures, specs, license(s), certificates of insurance, etc.) to the application.
- The capability of “chatting” online directly with the Building Inspectors staff.
- View inspection results.
- Track all permitting history including which permits remain open requiring final inspections or completed.
STEPS TO FOLLOW
Step 1) Pop up blockers: Pop up blockers in windows must be shutoff. Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox are the preferable internet browser’s to use with this permit software.
Step 2) If you will be a registered user - Register with Full Circle Technologies, Inc. Note: If you are already registered with Full Circle Technologies, Inc. for another city or town in Berkshire County, you do not have to create a new user id. You may log on using your existing id.
FILLING OUT A BUILDING PERMIT APPLICATION, (after you have logged onto the online permitting website).
- Click on New Application located at the upper left hand side of the home page form.
- Choose your street from the drop down menu.
- Choose your street number from the pulldown menu.
- Select the appropriate permit application from the dropdown menu. Residential permit applications are for one and two family dwellings, town houses and accessory uses (swimming pool, utility shed, gazebo, fence etc.). Commercial permit applications are for all other residential work, (multi-family dwelling, lodging facilities, hotels, motels etc.) and for all commercial work.
- The Use Group for 1 & 2 Family Dwellings is currently; R 3 and almost always, the Construction Type is: V B.
- For certain types of permit applications you will be prompted to submit an attachment. If for some reason you cannot complete the attachment, submit the attachment even if incomplete.
ADDING ATTACHMENTS TO A PERMIT APPLICATION:
After you submit your application, a page appears notifying you that your New Preliminary Application has been received. Click on the exit button at the bottom of the page, and it will return to the home page. Select your permit by clicking in circle in the column heading “A” … on the far left side of the home page. On the far right of the page under the heading, “My Options”, click on the dropdown menu. Click on “add attachments” and follow the prompts to add site plans, drawings and documents etc.
INSPECTIONS FOR RESIDENTIAL BUILDING PERMITS:
Construction or work, for which a permit is required, shall be subject to inspection by the building official and such construction or work shall remain accessible and exposed for inspection purposes until approved. Approval as a result of an inspection shall not be construed to be an approval of a violation of the provisions of this code or of other ordinances of the jurisdiction. Inspections presuming to give authority to violate or cancel the provisions of this code or of other ordinances of the jurisdiction shall not be valid. It shall be the duty of the permit applicant to cause the work to remain accessible and exposed for inspection purposes. Neither the building official nor the jurisdiction shall be liable for expense entailed in the removal or replacement of any material required to allow inspection.
Before issuing a permit, the building official is authorized to examine all buildings, structures and sites for which an application has been filed.
- Footing and foundation inspection. Footing and foundation inspections shall be made after excavations for footings are complete and any required reinforcing steel is in place. For concrete foundations, any required forms shall be in place and any required reinforcing steel prior to the inspection. Materials for the foundation shall be on the job, except where concrete is ready mixed in accordance with ASTM C 94, the concrete need not be on the job.
- Foundation Drainage Inspection. A foundation drainage system inspection and approval shall be made prior to backfilling the foundation to ensure compliance with IRC 2009 section R405.
- Foundation Waterproofing and or Damp proofing Inspection. A foundation waterproofing and or damp proofing inspection and approval shall be made prior to backfilling the foundation to ensure compliance with IRC 2009 section R406.
- Concrete slab and under-floor inspection. Concrete slab and under-floor inspections shall be made after in-slab or under-floor reinforcing steel and building service equipment, conduit, piping accessories and other ancillary equipment items are in place, but before any concrete is placed or floor sheathing installed, including the subfloor.
- Lowest floor elevation. In flood hazard areas, upon placement of the lowest floor, including the basement, and prior to further vertical construction, the elevation certification shall be submitted to the building official.
- Frame inspection. Framing inspections shall be made after the roof deck or sheathing, all framing, fire blocking, fire caulking and bracing are in place and pipes, chimneys and vents to be concealed are complete and the rough electrical, plumbing, heating wires, pipes and ducts are approved.
- Lath and gypsum board inspection. Lath and gypsum board inspections shall be made after lathing and gypsum board, interior and exterior, is in place, but before any plastering is applied or gypsum board joints and fasteners are taped and finished.
Exception: Gypsum board that is not part of a fire-resistance-rated assembly or a shear assembly.
- Energy efficiency inspections. Inspections shall be made to determine compliance with IEBC 2009 with Mass. Amendments. In Stretch Code communities, compliance with 780 CMR Appendix AA shall include, but not be limited to, inspections for: envelope insulation R- and U-values, fenestration U-value, duct system R-value, and HVAC and water-heating equipment efficiency.
- Other inspections. In addition to the inspections specified above, the building official is authorized to make or require other inspections of any construction work to ascertain compliance with the provisions of this code and other laws that are enforced by the department of building safety.
- Final inspection. The final inspection shall be made after all work required by the permit is completed and approved.