Building Permits

Planning a home improvement project? How about renovating for a new business venture? We can guide you through the process and keep you on track from start to finish. Our staff is available to help answer your questions. The Code Enforcement Division’s Procedures Manual will help you through the permit process. Our inspectors review your plans, issue permits, and conduct all inspections. For more information, please contact Code Enforcement at (302) 366-7000.

View or download the permit application.

Projects Requiring Permits

Building Permits are required with:

  • Building or Installing
    • New houses, structures, buildings, deck or patio roofs or covers
    • Chimneys, garages, heating, ventilating, or air conditioning systems
    • Supply or exhaust hoods, swimming pools, tool or storage sheds, fences
  • Repairing or Replacing
    • Structural reconstruction due to water or terminate damage, existing structural stone, or concrete or brick
    • Interior surfaces in restaurants and other assembly uses and any structural work
    • Roofing and siding may also require permits
  • Additions, Alterations, Renovations or Change in the Use of a Structure
    • Rooms, dormers, bay windows, or alterations to floor plans or wall openings
    • Water heaters, furnaces, boilers, and/or air conditioning systems
    • Adding circuits or changing electrical services
    • Conversion of any porch, garage, or basement to living/sleeping area

An amendment to the City of Newark Building Code requires all new buildings, both residential and commercial, built in the City of Newark to have an approved fire suppression system.

Current Codes Adopted by the City of Newark

  • 2018 International Building Code
  • 2018 International Existing Building Code
  • 2018 International Energy Conservation Code
  • 2018 International Residential Code
  • 2018 International Plumbing Code
  • 2018 International Mechanical Code
  • 2018 International Fuel Gas Code
  • 2018 International Fire Code
  • 2009 International Property Maintenance Code
  • Delaware State Fire Prevention Code
  • NFPA Fire Prevention Codes

Other codes are referenced and/or adopted by the City of Newark.

Use Group Change

A change in use group for an existing structure may require the installation of a fire suppression system. Examples include:

  • Residential to Any Other Use
  • Mercantile to Business

For more information regarding change of use, please contact Code Enforcement at (302) 366-7000.

EPA Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule Program 

The EPA Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Program Rule (RRP) is a federal regulatory program aimed at protecting children against the hazards associated with disturbing Lead-based paint during renovation, repair and painting activities. The program became effective April 22, 2010.

This program calls for workers to be trained by an EPA accredited training provider to use lead-safe work practices and requires companies to be EPA-certified. The rule applies to renovations performed for compensation in pre-1978 residential housing and/or child-occupied facilities. Child-occupied facilities are defined as any pre-1978 residential, commercial, or public facility where children under the age of six are regularly present (i.e., elementary schools, day care centers, pediatric hospital wards, etc). Under the rule there are other obligations which certified firms must perform. The rule also requires that consumers be given an EPA publication on lead-safe work practices, entitled "Renovate Right."


The rule covers any person who performs renovation for compensation, including:

  • Construction and renovation contractors
  • Window replacement contractors
  • Electricians
  • Plumbers
  • Painters
  • Property managers and their staff
  • Handymen
  • Landlords who perform repairs themselves (rent is considered to be compensation)

Homeowners doing work on their personal residence are not covered by the rule.

More Information

There is additional information available on RRP, or to learn more about lead, call the National Lead Information Center at (800) 424-LEAD.