Who should obtain the permit?

Contractors licensed by the State of California can obtain permits.  The home owner can also obtain the construction permits.

Can I do the work myself or do I have to hire a contractor?

Property owners can do the work themselves or hire out, but they must follow certain regulations, including:

Workers compensation:

If you will be hiring anyone, you may have to have Workers’ Compensation Insurance.  This insurance is available from many agencies.  If you won’t be hiring anyone, we will ask you to sign an “Owner-Builder Statement” indicating this.

Build to the plans:

Be sure to follow your approved plans, whether they are drawn by an architect or are standard construction requirements given to you by the county.  If you deviate from the approved plans, this will cause problems when the project is inspected.

Who draws up the plans?

Plans for a project such as a room addition can usually be drawn by a qualified individual such as a draftsman or homeowner.  Other projects may require plans signed by a licensed architect or engineer.  All plans must be drawn to scale.  Two sets of plans are required which show the project layout in relation to the entire parcel and all other improvements on the site.

For projects such as routine retaining walls, patio covers or carports, the city has standard specifications that can be followed, within certain limitations.  Those specifications, together with a plot plan showing the project, are accepted by the city as the plans.

In addition, some kit-type projects come with construction plans.  When you apply for permits, bring the instruction sheets along – they may serve as the plans.

What about a contractor?

The City of Exeter recommends you deal only with a contractor licensed by the State of California.  The State Contractor’s Licensing Board’s telephone number is 559.445.5281


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