Permitting and Inspections

Before Applying for a Permit:

Any new construction, enlargement, alteration, repair work, relocation, demolition, or change in occupancy of a building or structure will require obtaining a permit from the City. Landscaping and/or painting projects are the only exceptions. For code compliance and informational handouts regarding various construction projects within the City of Cedar Falls please go to this link.

In order to obtain a permit from the city you must either be the homeowner or a general contractor. All general contractors must be registered and insured, see link for general contractor information.  Homeowners may do their own electrical, mechanical, and plumbing work if they meet the Homestead Tax Credit requirements of the Black Hawk County Assessor’s office,  and provide proof of the Homestead Tax Credit if it is not readily viewable on the Black Hawk County Assessor’s website.

Note: If your property is located in one of the following overlay or zoning districts, review by the Planning & Zoning Commission and City Council may be required prior to issuance of any permits. Please contact the Planning and Community Services Division (273-8600) to confirm or if you have questions. 

  • Central Business District Overlay
  • College Hill Neighborhood Overlay
  • MU Zoning
  • Highway Commercial District Zoning
  • Planned Commercial District

To find the zoning for your property or see roughly where your property lines are go to the Black Hawk County Assessors Mapping WebsiteFor a step by step tutorial for the most common inquiries click here.

Permit Fees:

City building permit fees are based on the total project cost: see Permit Fee Schedule. You will need to know your project cost in order to apply for a permit. Exceptions to this are driveways, parking lots, fences, signage, and any detached structures under 120 square feet.

All Land Use Permits have a standard $25 fee that will be added to the building fee, if applicable.

Each sign permit has a $25 fee with $1 added for every square foot of sign area over 100 square feet. $200 maximum. 

Applying for a Permit:

Building permit applications must be submitted at the Inspections desk at City Hall at 220 Clay Street. Hard copies of the application are available at the inspections desk. All other permits can be submitted online through our CF1Stop site, see bottom of page. For electronic copies of the various applications click here.

Permit Review:

When a permit application is submitted the review process and time can vary based on the type of project. Please anticipate approximately one week for City Staff to review the permit. Progress of the permit application is available on CF1Stop or call (319) 268-5161.

Permit Validity: 

1 year. Extensions can be granted upon request.

Inspections:

After the permit application is reviewed and approved a permit will be issued and work can start. The permit will be sent to you via mail or it can be picked up in person at Building Inspections in City Hall if requested. You will be provided an inspection card that indicates the inspections that are required to take place and when those inspections will need to occur during the construction process. When work is completed on an item identified on the card please call (319) 268-5161 to set up the necessary inspections. Each permit’s progress can be viewed on the CF1Stop site at any time.

Click here

If you have and questions please feel free to call 319-273- 8600 and you will be forwarded to the correct department.