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How Long Does It Take to Get a Building Permit in San Antonio?

How Long Does It Take to Get a Building Permit in San Antonio?

Whether you’re investing in a new property or doing some simple remodeling work, permits are essential in keeping everyone involved in the project protected. This allows the contractor, the client, and the government of San Antonio an easier time with accountability concerns. 


Contractors often handle most of the legwork to obtain the necessary permits. However, having a better understanding of the process can possibly affect decision-making. In order to avoid complications during the project, it helps to have a clear timeline on how the necessary permits can be obtained.  This timeline can vary depending on the type of building project. 


Similar to the construction project itself, there are various stages for required permits. The overall process usually takes around a few weeks to a month, depending on the length of time needed to work on the actual construction. We’ll go over each one as well as provide an overview of the process involved. Here you can learn more information



Construction projects must be carried out by a licensed contractor registered with the city of San Antonio and has obtained the proper building permits. This part of the project timeline is largely dependent on the time frame needed to locate a contractor that meets these requirements.



You will need to verify what kind of district the property is in before the building can start. The city of San Antonio has various zoning districts and not all of them allow for residential or commercial use. 


If you are in a historic district, river improvement overlay district, a local landmark, or viewshed protection, you will need authorization from the Office of Historic Preservation for your Project. Most of these can be done online and handled over the course of a few days.


Permit Application

After verifying what the zoning district allows for construction and that the property is properly platted, you can proceed with the building permit application proper. Contractors registered with the city of San Antonio are allowed to obtain all residential building permits required on behalf of the homeowner. 


The type of permits needed can vary depending on the project scope. While some permits take time to review, this usually only takes around three business days maximum for residential buildings. Commercial buildings may take a bit longer, usually between 8 to 70 days, depending on the permit type being applied for.



Upon submission of the necessary documents and the fees have been paid for, Development Services will forward the building plans to the appropriate departments for review. Assuming that all things are in order, this process should take around three business days, longer for commercial buildings. This may take even longer if there are revisions or modifications needed to be handled.



To ensure the safety and good health of the community, its residents, and contractors, building inspections are conducted during each stage of construction.  This ensures that each installation is up to the required building codes. This phase of the permit application process can be dependent on the length of time needed to finish stages of construction and the availability of inspectors to visit the site.



Once the final approvals have been given during the inspections, Development Services can provide the green light to turn on utility services, this can include gas, electricity, and water. These can also be provided temporarily if required for the construction process and can be requested by the appropriate contractors.