Plan Review & Field Service Inspections

​Sustainable Development and Construction

Building Inspection

Certificate of Occupancy

Need a copy of an existing Certificate of Occupancy (CO)?
Go to this page and follow these instructions.

When do I need a Certificate of Occupancy (CO)?

The Dallas Development Code requires that "Except for single family and duplex uses, a person shall not use or change the use of a building, a portion of a building, or land without obtaining a certificate of occupancy from the building official."

A new CO is needed for:

  • The first use of land or a building
  • A change of use of land or a building
  • A change of tenant on an existing CO, or
  • An existing use increases or decreases floor area

How to get a Certificate of Occupancy

The cost for a CO is $215.00 plus a $65.00 Code Compliance fee.

A "record change" can be made to a CO when only the name of the business (DBA) changes. The cost is $30.00. For Multifamily uses, this option is only available when no code violations are on record for the apartment. If code violations exist on record, a new CO must be applied for and inspections of the building are made. You must have multi-tenant approval from Code Compliance PRIOR to applying for a CO.

What is a Temporary CO?

A temporary CO allows occupancy of a structure or suite while certain non-safety related work such as landscaping is near completion. The cost for a temporary CO is $104.00.

Where do I go to obtain a CO?

Building Inspection Division 
320 E Jefferson Boulevard, Room 118 – Permit Center 
Dallas, Texas 75203

Please note: Temporary Certificate of Occupancy's must be applied for at a District Office.

How long does it take to obtain a CO?

If the proposed use is the same as the previous use, a CO application can be approved and inspections scheduled "over the counter," while you wait, at any building inspection district office. If the proposed use is different from the previous use, you may be required to provide a site plan with a parking analysis and building plans. The time needed to review the plans may take up to two weeks depending on the complexity of the project.

What Special Rules Apply if my Establishment Sells Alcoholic Beverages?

See Alcohol Measurement Checklist

What are the procedures to obtain a CO?

Complete and submit an application, land use questionnaire, and CO checklist to Building Inspection along with the appropriate fee.  If the use will be different from the previous use, follow the instructions on our pamphlet to determine additional submission requirements.

Before the building can be occupied and electricity turned on by Oncor Electric, the building site must be inspected and approved by building, electrical, and plumbing/mechanical inspectors. Health inspections are required on ALL food establishments with a $121.00 Health Permit Application. When requested, these inspections take place the following work day after application review is complete or may be scheduled at a later date at your convenience. Please access our brochure on How to use the 24-hour Automated Inspection System for your convenience.

Inspections are performed between 8:30am – 3:30pm. The building must be accessible to inspectors on the day inspections are scheduled and the correct address and suite numbers must be posted. If the building is not accessible and ready for inspection, a $75.00 reinspection fee will be charged for the first reinspection.

When the CO is approved by all inspectors, the electricity will be released to Oncor Electric and the CO will be mailed to the applicant for posting at the site.