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Building Department

The Sunny Isles Beach Building Department is here to help individuals, families and businesses understand what it takes to create safe and sustainable structures. Building permitting can often seem complex and daunting, however, it is an important and necessary process, which allows the building department to ensure the safety of all our residents and visitors. The information below can be used as a guide to assist you in deciphering this process. Information on why and when building permits are needed, where they can be obtained, how to keep your best interests at the forefront, and online resources to help ease the process are featured.

For more information about building permitting and the SIB Building Department or to schedule an inspection, call 305.947.2150.

Building Permits

What is a building permit?

What is a building permit?

A Building Permit is the formal approval by the designated government agency, which gives you legal permission to start construction of a building project in accordance with approved drawings and specifications that comply with the requirements of the Florida Building Code and other applicable federal, state, county, and local codes. In short, a building permit is a license that grants the owner authorization to construct or alter a structure.

Why do I need a building permit?

Why do I need a building permit?

A permit brings you the service of the Building Department Plans Reviewers and Inspectors who are experts in their field. In addition to giving advice, they approve each phase of your project, checking to see that the work is done in accordance with the code and approved plans. Working without a permit is illegal, can result in fines, can be a life safety hazard to you and your neighbors and can cause problems if and when you sell/refinance your house. Your permit also allows our certified inspectors to protect you and the public by reducing the potential hazards of unsafe construction and ensuring public health, safety, and welfare. By following code guidelines, the completed project will meet minimum standards of safety and will be less likely to cause injury to you, your family, your friends, or future owners.

When do I need a building permit?

When do I need a building permit?

The best way to find out if you need a permit is to call the Building Department at 305.947.2150. Discuss your proposed project with the building department staff before beginning work to determine whether you need a permit. Even if a permit is not needed, the SIB Building Department staff can answer construction and renovation questions and may provide valuable advice that can save you time and money in the long run.

Work that REQUIRES a PermitSingle Family ResidencesCondominium UnitsApartment / Hotel UnitsCommercial / Retail Office / Building Associations
AdditionsXXXX
DemolitionsXXXX
New ConstructionXXXX
RENOVATIONS (EXTERIOR)
Awnings/Screen Enclosures
(Installation)
XXXX
Decks, Driveways & WalkwaysXXXX
Doors (Installation)XXXX
FencesXXXX
Garages (Renovations or Conversions)XXXX
PaintingXXXX
PoolsXXXX
Roofing
(Repair or Replace)
XXXX
Sheds & Accessory Structures (Installation)XX
Windows/Shutters (Installation)XXXX
RENOVATIONS (INTERIOR)
Appliances (Replacement) permanently attached to plumbing, mechanical, electrical systems such as garbage disposals, water heatersXXXX
Bathroom (Remodel)XXXX
Drywall Repairs/Replacements/RemovalXXXX
Electrical SystemsXXXX
Flooring - Carpet
Flooring - Tile, Wood, Laminate, etc.XXX
HVAC Systems - Permanent Units (Heating, Ventilating, Air Conditioning)XXXX
HVAC - Portable Units (Heating Appliances, Ventilation Equipment & Cooling Units)
Kitchen (Remodel)XXXX
Molding & TrimX
Painting
Plumbing SystemsXXXX
ShelvingX
The above list is not all-inclusive. Please call your building department at 305.947.2150 to verify if a permit is required for your project.

Where can I get a building permit?

Where can I get a building permit?

SIB residents can obtain their permits from:

Sunny Isles Beach Government Center
SIB Building Department, 3rd Floor
18070 Collins Ave., 3rd Floor

Permit Forms & Applications

For more information call the Building Department at 305.947.2150.

Is a licensed contractor required for my project?

Is a licensed contractor required for my project?


Yes. If you live in a Condominium Building, you must always hire a licensed contractor to do any type of work. You can only act as your own contractor (called an owner-builder) on a single family or a duplex residential project, but you are still responsible for meeting the requirements of Florida Statute Section 489.103(7). Florida Statutes only exempt homeowners when they are building a single or two family residence to live in themselves. If they intend to sell the property within one year after obtaining the final Certificate of Occupancy, then they are no longer exempt.

What happens if I have been cited for beginning construction prior to obtaining a permit?

What happens if I have been cited for beginning construction prior to obtaining a permit?


You will be required to obtain “After the Fact” permits. If the construction conforms to the code and your plans are acceptable, the permit will be issued and appropriate inspections will be made. If the construction does not conform to the code, you have two options:
1. the work completed must be brought into compliance to the specifications of the code or
2. the work done illegally must be removed, and you must have a permit to demolish the illegal structure. Inspections should be made to ensure that it has been demolished and the property cleared.

 

The Permitting Process

The Permitting Process: Steps 1 - 6

The Permitting Process: Steps 1 - 6

1) Talk to your SIB Building Department Staff
Your Building Department staff wants your project to be a success and will help you avoid potential problems that could cost you time and money. You will be asked some basic questions. (What are you planning to do? Where?) The Building Dept. staff will advise of any requirements, and if necessary, refer you to outside agencies/departments for their approval. Miami-Dade Fire Department and Miami-Dade Department of Environmental Resource Management (DERM) are two agencies that will typically be involved in the review of your project. Building Department Staff will provide you with the resources and information needed for compliance with the applicable building codes. You will then receive an application for a building permit. Remember, you can always ask the Building Dept. to schedule a pre-construction meeting by calling 305.947.2150.

2) Submit an Application
At this stage, you will document the “Who, What, When, Where, and How” of the job, by submitting an SIB permit application along with any layouts drawings, or plans of the proposed work.

3) Review Process
The SIB certified plans examiners will review your plans and determine if your project is in compliance with local requirements and the applicable building codes. If your plans meet these requirements, a permit will be issued. If not, the plan examiners will issue comments and may suggest solutions to help correct the problem.

4) Receive Permit
Once your application has been approved, whoever was designated as the point of contact on the permit application will be contacted to receive the permit. When you receive the permit card you will have legal permission to start the project. It is important to verify that any contractor you hire has obtained a permit prior to starting the project. A fee, based on the size of the job, and based on the City’s approved fee schedule, is collected to cover the cost of the application, the review, and the inspection process. Typically, our minimum permit fee, per trade, is $125. A complete copy of the Building Department’s fee schedule can be found here. Separate permits are required for electrical, plumbing, and heating or air-conditioning work.

5) Inspections
On-site inspections will be required to make certain the work conforms to the permit, the approved plans, and all applicable federal, state, county, and local codes. Again, you will have access to the expertise of the City’s inspectors to help you with questions or concerns regarding the project and to minimize potentially costly mistakes. Depending on the size of the project, the number of inspections may vary. Your contractor will be responsible for calling progress inspections throughout the course of the job. Inspections that are called in before 3:00 pm are typically performed the following business day.

6) Final Approval
At the end of your project, the Building Official provides documentation when construction is complete and code compliance has been determined. Enjoy your new surroundings with the peace of mind and the knowledge that they meet the safety standards in your community. It takes everyone in a community to keep our homes, schools, offices, stores, and other buildings safe for public use. Your safe construction practices help protect you, your family, your friends, and your investment.

Online Permitting & Inspection Services

Online Permitting & Inspection Services


Did you know you can access your permit & inspection information and status updates online? After the initial permit application is completed in person at the Building Department, homeowners, contractors and developers may now track a permit with an online account. This account gives access to the entire process including plan review, comments, issuance of the permit, inspections, and the permit closeout once the job is complete.

All of the information is in real time, meaning a processing number is issued for the permit as soon as the contractor has met with the permit clerk and updates are entered. Inspection results are also available as soon as an inspector enters the information onsite. This system gives complete, instant access to permits from the time of application through completion of the project. You will receive immediate email updates throughout the progression of your project.

Create your online account

Specialized Permitting Services

Specialized Permitting Services


At the request of our residents and developers, the Building Department now provides Specialized Permitting Services for Interior Remodeling Permits. This service includes:

  • A Pre-Construction meeting with the Building Official and/or designee
  • Permit counter service by appointment; no lines, no waiting
  • Expedited Plan Review
  • Orientation and direct assistance in setting up an online permitting account
  • Concierge service throughout the permitting and inspection process from start to finish

In addition to the calculated permit fees, this new service will cost $1,000 OR 1% of the total job cost, whichever is higher (job cost will be determined by the Building Official or designee).

Please contact Paola Villa, Building Services Manager for the Sunny Isles Beach Building Department at 305.792.1790 for additional information regarding this service.

 

Most Common Types of Permits: Requirements

Indoor Permitting

Air Conditioning Replacement

Air Conditioning Replacement

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application and fee sheet
  • Proof of Ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 sets of the AHRI Document and Mounting Details
  • 2 sets of structural calculations
  • For work in Condominiums: Condominium Association’s approval letter (An original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

Flooring Permit

Flooring Permit

  • Condominium Association’s approval letter (an original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated, signed and notarized by the Board)
  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 copies of unit’s floor plan
  • 2 copies of sound control specifications for material and thickness to be used
  • Doors: If any door will be cut at the time of installation, the Building Dept. must be notified. A separate permit may be required.
  • Balconies Waterproofing: A separate Waterproofing permit is required. Contractor must be an approved applicator of the waterproofing material to be used and must submit a letter from the waterproofing company stating this approval. An approved waterproofing material is required. Two (2) copies of the Notice of Acceptance shall be attached to permit plans/documents. Information about approved products and approved laboratories can be found here. Waterproofing inspection is required.
  • For Bathrooms / Lavatories / Laundry Rooms / Vanity sink areas: Plumbing Permit is required
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

New Construction / Interior Remodeling

New Construction / Interior Remodeling

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of Ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 complete sets of signed and sealed plans
  • Plans must be reviewed and approved by W.A.S.D.*, DERM (Dept. of Environmental Resource Management), Miami-Dade County and the Fire Dept.
  • 2 signed and sealed copies of the property’s spot survey and proposed elevation certificate (for new construction only)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

*Review by these agencies applies to new construction, additions, changes in use only

Outdoor Permitting

Asphalt, Driveway, & Sidewalks Permit

Asphalt, Driveway, & Sidewalks Permit

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 sets of drawings showing location of the driveway, drainage & work specifications
  • 2 sets of a recent survey
  • Commercial condominium buildings require layout of parking
  • For work in Condominiums: Condominium Association’s approval letter (An original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

Exterior Painting Permit

Exterior Painting Permit

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 copies of color samples for exterior paint submitted for approval (WARNING: Do not purchase paint until approved by Zoning Department)
  • 2 copies of the building elevations or pictures of structure showing areas to be painted
  • For Work in Condominiums: Condominium Association’s approval letter (an original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

Fences Permit

Fences Permit

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 copies of site plan & recent survey
  • Fence specifications (i.e. type and height) must be indicated on the permit application
  • Property owner & contractor must comply with SIB Ordinance 2001-125 for vacant properties
  • If Solid Fence: 2 copies of signed & sealed wind load calculations prepared by a Structural Engineer or Registered Architect
  • For Work in Condominiums: Condominium Association’s approval letter (an original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

Patio Deck Permit

Patio Deck Permit

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 sets of drawing showing location of deck and deck specifications
  • For Work in Condominiums: Condominium Association’s approval letter (an original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

Pool Permit

Pool Permit

  • Completed, signed & notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, Tax Bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • Building, Plumbing, Electrical & Mechanical permits required for pools
  • 2 copies of recent survey, site plans, and signed & sealed pool plans
  • 2 copies of Soil Test
  • Fence permit required
  • County Health Dept. to be notified in writing of proposed resurfacing work by contractor. Copy of letter must be submitted to the Building Department
  • For Work in Condominiums: Condominium Association’s approval letter (an original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

Storm Shutters, Windows & Doors Permit

Storm Shutters, Windows & Doors Permit

  • Completed, signed and notarized permit application
  • Proof of ownership (Deed, Closing Statement, tax bill, or Corporation’s Annual Report)
  • 2 copies of the product’s Miami-Dade County Product Control approval (May be obtained from manufacturer, contractor, or Miami-Dade County)
  • 2 signed and sealed copies of calculations for site-specific wind pressure prepared by a Structural Engineer or Registered Architect
  • 2 copies of unit/building layout showing shutter type and location for installation
  • Shutter Installation: 2 signed & sealed copies of the Shutter Product Approval Authorization form from Shutter Company
  • For work in Condominiums: Association’s Approval Letter (an original letter on the Association’s letterhead which is dated and signed by the Board)
  • Copy of the contract document signed by the owner and the contractor

 

The Importance of Hiring Licensed Contractors

Guidelines to Help You Make the Right Decision When Hiring a Contractor

Guidelines to Help You Make the Right Decision When Hiring a Contractor

While hiring an unlicensed contractor may provide a quick fix in the short term, it can result in serious and lasting consequences, including further damage to your property. By hiring a licensed contractor, you will have peace of mind knowing that the project will be done by someone who has taken the time to acquire the appropriate education & proper workers’ compensation and/or liability insurance. Remember the first step in adding value to your home is hiring the right contractor to complete the project.

  • Before hiring a contractor, ask to see a state-issued license. Depending on the type of work, some contractors may only need a Miami-Dade County license. You can call the SIB Building Department at 305.947.5107 to find out what type of licensed contractor is required for your project.
  • Make sure a contractor’s license is current and active by calling the State at 850.487.1395 or visiting MyFloridalicense.com. You can also verify a contractor’s information by calling the SIB Building Department.
  • An occupational license does not qualify an individual to act as a contractor.
  • Ask for references. A legitimate contractor will be happy to provide you with the names & contact information of recent customers.
  • Get written estimates from several licensed contractors. Make sure the estimate includes the work the contractor will do, materials involved, completion date, and total cost.
  • Beware of contractors who claim to be the fastest of cheapest. Hiring them could result in poor workmanship, inferior materials or unfinished jobs.
  • Avoid paying cash.
  • Avoid any contractor who requires payment in advance. Arrange to pay after work is completed or in agreed-upon installments.
  • Don’t sign off that the work is complete until all work is finished to your satisfaction and all permits are cleared via a final inspection and/or a Certificate of Completion from the Building Department.
  • If your contract exceeds $2,500, become familiar with the Florida Construction Lien Law. You can find details at MyFlorida.com/dbpr.
  • Beware of contractors soliciting business door-to-door, who frequently travel in unmarked trucks & vans. They usually give a post office box address instead of a street address.

 

40 Years or Older Recertification

Building Recertification

Building Recertification

In accordance with Miami-Dade County Code, Section 8-11 (f), all buildings, except single-family residences, duplexes and minor structures** which are forty (40) years or older must be recertified by the Building Official when the structure becomes 40 years old and then every 10 years after the first Recertification.

The Owner or Owner’s representative must hire a Registered Architect and/or a Professional Engineer to perform electrical and structural inspections for the building and submit a completed report of the inspection performed to the SIB Building Department for approval.

(**Minor Buildings are defined as any occupancy group having an occupant load of 10 or less, with a gross area of 2,000 square feet or less.)

40 Year Recertification Process

40 Year Recertification Process

When a building becomes 40 years old, the SIB Building Department sends out a “Notice of Required Inspection” to the Property Owner or Owner’s representative. The property owner has 90 days from the receipt of the notification to complete the required inspection and submit complete written reports to the Building Official. This inspection/report must be prepared by a Professional Engineer or an Architect registered in the State of Florida, certifying that each such building or structure is structurally and electrically safe, or has been made structurally and electrically safe for the specified use for continued occupancy in conformity with the minimum inspection procedural guidelines as issued by the Miami-Dade County Board of Rules and Appeals. Building Re-certification reports shall bear the impressed seal and signature of the certifying Engineer and or Architect.

If repairs are required

If repairs are required

If repairs or modifications are necessary following the building recertification inspection, the Owner shall have a total of 150 days from the date of the Notice of Required Inspection to complete indicated repairs or modifications in compliance with all applicable Sections of the Florida Building Code. The Owner of the property must hire a State of Florida Licensed Contractor and obtain permits from the Building Department prior to performing any repairs or modifications. Once all permits receive an approved final inspection from the electrical and/or structural inspectors, the Professional Engineer and/or the Registered Architect of record must submit a signed and sealed report stating that all repairs have been completed and the building is structurally and electrically safe for continued use.

What do you need to submit?

What do you need to submit?

Applicants must submit the following:

  • Structural inspection report according to the Minimum Inspection Guidelines for Building Safety as required by the Miami-Dade County Board of Rules and Appeals (signed & sealed, 2 copies)
  • Electrical inspection report according to the Minimum Inspection Guidelines for Building Safety as required by the Miami-Dade County Board of Rules and Appeals (signed & sealed, 2 copies)
  • All forms sealed/stamped by a Florida registered Architect or Engineer
  • All forms with original signature
  • Architect/engineer is required to check the correct box for either “Repairs Required” or “No  Repairs Required”
  • Check made out to the SIB for the amount specified in your notice

What if I no longer own the property?

What if I no longer own the property?

We will verify through the Miami-Dade County Property Appraiser’s Office that there is a new owner and make changes in our database. If the MDCPA still shows you as the property owner, you will need to contact their office directly to have it changed.

What if the building is not 40 years old?

What if the building is not 40 years old?

If you believe the building is not 40 years old, please contact us and we will research the property further with the Miami-Dade County Property Appraiser’s office to verify the age.

I Did a Complete Interior Renovation of My Property, Am I exempt?

I Did a Complete Interior Renovation of My Property, Am I exempt?

No. If the work was recently completed, the architect should be able to recertify the building on the required forms. The required recertification process will not be waived unless the ENTIRE building was demolished.

Does the Building Have to be Brought Up to Today’s Code?

Does the Building Have to be Brought Up to Today’s Code?

No. The report submitted verifies that what is existing is safe. However, if repairs are required, they may be required to meet the current code.

Am I Required to Install Emergency Lights & Fire Alarms?

Am I Required to Install Emergency Lights & Fire Alarms?

This is determined by the Miami-Dade County Fire Department and not the City of Sunny Isles Beach. You can contact the Fire Department at 786.331.5000.

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