Permit Updates in Washington DC
Tracking Construction Permit Applications in DC

How to Find Permit Applications With PIVS

DCRA maintains records of all permits approved. On a weekly basis they post a list (in PDF) of permits issued that month-to-date and at the conclusion of the month will post the monthly list. If there is no link, the permit list has not yet been released. To see permits (and other information for a single particular address) check out PIVS–Property Information Verification System.  PIVS DC has ceased publishing Building Permits Issued pages but you can still look up a permit by property address or legal description using PIVS.  
Find Original Permit to Build Washingtoniana has microfilm of building permits from the National Archives collection, all permits issued from 1877-1949. The most important permit to find is the “Permit to Build,” and the best way to find that permit is to search the Building Permits Database (now available online at HistoryQuest DC). The database includes most of the information from the original permit, including date of construction, architect, builder, owner, materials, dimensions, cost and use of the building. Permits issued after 1949 are available at the D.C. Archives. You may also choose to look at the permit as it was originally issued, by consulting the building permits on microfilm. The original permit may include additional information not found in the database, such as plat drawings or inspector reports. If the permit has the note “plans on file,” the plans for the property are available at National Archives in College Park.
 Find other Permits There may be other permits associated with a property in addition to the Permit to Build, such as permits to renovate, to build an addition or a garage, to add additional stories or a new facade, etc. These permits must be accessed using the microfilm indexes: By Square Number 1877-1928 By Subdivision 1877-1908 (for property in Washington County — above Boundary St./Florida Ave. — east of Anacostia River; consult plat maps for subdivision names) By Street Address 1928-1958

Apply For A Permit Online

DCRA has upgraded its Online Construction Permit system to allow applicants to obtain permits online from start to finish. No further need for those fun trips to the DCRA office! Included are permits for intermediate and complex jobs. Simply upload plans through the ProjectDox system, pay, and obtain your new permit copy. Questions? Check out the  OCPI User Guide.


Serving the neighborhoods of Northwest DC, Northeast DC, Southeast DC and Southwest DC including Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, Crestwood, Capitol Hill, H Street, Kalorama, Mount Pleasant, Columbia Heights, Georgetown, West End, Burleith, Foggy Bottom, Shaw, LeDroit Park, Bloomingdale, U Street, Penn Quarter, Mt. Vernon Triangle, Palisades, Chevy Chase, Friendship Heights, Barnaby Woods, American University Park, Observatory Circle, Forest Hills, Woodley Park, FoxHall, 14th Street Corridor, U Street Corridor, Meridian Hill, Hill East, Barracks Row, Eastern Market and portions of Northern Virginia including Arlington, Alexandria, McLean, Great Falls, Fairfax, Vienna and Falls Church.
Realtors are not CPAs or attorneys and are not permitted to give accounting, investment, tax or legal advice. Refer to a CPA, investment professional or legal professional for all related matters. Any information provided on this site pertaining to such issues is not intended as tax or legal advice and is provided solely for the purpose of illustration. Resources cited are believed to be accurate but are not guaranteed and are subject to change without notice.