Code Question Hotline

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Code Question Hotline at WorkCode Question Hotline: (816) 513-1511

The Code Question Hotline is your source for building and construction code related questions. You can always call the code question hotline to get a prompt answer from our knowledgeable staff member. However, you can save yourself a call by checking out our Frequently Asked Questions below.

  • Code Question Hotline

    • Is an ice and water shield required in Kansas City, Missouri?

      No, per KCBRC Article III Table R301.2(1).

    • I’m installing a new driveway, or resurfacing or expanding an existing driveway… what do I do?

      Vehicle use areas are made up of (3) parts; a drive approach from the street to the property line, a driveway, and a parking space. The only portion of the driveway that requires permit and inspection is the drive approach in the right-of- way. The driveway and parking space do not require permit but must be zoning compliant per ordinance section 88-420-012. You will need to come to the 5th floor, City Hall, and obtain zoning review and approval, or request review at If a drive approach permit is needed, the approved zoning review must be provided to Land Development as part of their process. The LDD contact is Theresa Harper at (816) 513-2553.

    • Do I need a permit to replace my roof?

      This depends on the scope of the project. Replacing the roofing material, underlayment and no more than 32 sq. ft. of decking does not require permit. If more than 32 sq ft of decking is being replaced, then a building permit is required and the contractor must have a current KCMO Business License. If roof rafters or other structural elements are being repaired and/or replaced, then review (scope of work or plan submittal) is required and the contractor may be required to have a Residential Contractors license.

    • If I don’t need a permit to do the work, does it need to comply with the building code?

      Yes, there is always an expectation of code compliance whether the work performed rises to the level of over site from the City or not. This is typically called best practice and is largely reflective of the experience and quality standards set by the contractor you hire.  Additionally, since the adopted building code sets a minimum standard of work, it frequently defers to manufacturers installation guidelines which often requires a standard that exceeds the building code requirement.

    • I want to build a garage/carport/shed. Do I need a permit?

      Any detached accessory structure less than 200 square feet does not require a permit but must remain compliant per zoning ordinance section 88-305-02 (residential). For detached accessories structures greater than 200 square feet in size, a building permit must be obtained. A Board of Zoning Adjustment variance will be required for sheds, storage, pool houses, etc. greater than 200 square feet in size. Plan review will be required per Information Bulletin 100.

    • I want to build a room or garage addition on my home. Do I need a permit?

      This will require a full plan submittal, review and approval prior to permit issuance per Information Bulletin 100.

    • I want to put up a fence. Do I need a permit?

      Fences are governed per City Ordinance, Chapter 27, Fences and Walls. The fence may not exceed 4 feet in height in the front and street side yard if on a corner lot. It may not exceed 6 feet in height in the interior side and rear yards. No permit is required. Contact Neighborhoods and Housing ((816) 513-3200) or 311 for guidance and enforcement.

    • Can I install/repair a septic tank?

      The proposed project will require plan submittal and review per Information Bulletin 105 and compliance with section 88-405-05-C. Once plans are approved, a permit can be issued.

    • Is my project eligible for an Express Review?

      See Information Bulletin 115. You may also discuss eligibility with the Express Plan Reviewer, 816-513-1500, option 3, option 5, request to speak with the Express Reviewer.

    • I want to combine lots/decombine lots.. what is the process?

      • If the parcels are existing platted lots, please contact the County having jurisdiction to combine and/or decombine lots.
      • If the parcels are unplatted, made up of several lots and you are interested in decombining to a different number or configuration, or made up of portions of other lots, please contact the Development Management Division, (816) 513-8801.

    • Does a Certificate of Occupancy (COO) mean the building is safe to occupy?

      A COO will not be issued until the project is completed and structures are allowed to be occupied and/or used. Not all projects that are issued a COO are considered occupiable space, such as a cell tower or roller coaster, or uncovered porches and deck, or pools.

    • How do we obtain copies of existing Certificates of Occupancy or Occupant Load Certificates?

      • Certificates of Occupancy (COO) are shown on Compass KC as a CICO and signed copies can be printed and provided as needed.
      • If a signed copy of a historical COO is needed, please refer to Senior Administrative Assistant to the Building Official at (816) 513-8833. A fee will be assessed based on their schedule. Valid only for existing uses with no changes.
      • Copies of existing Occupant Load Certificates (OLC) can be obtained for a $33.00 fee. Please contact Permits Division, or (816) 513-1459, for guidance. Valid only for existing uses with no changes.

    • What are the adopted building codes for the City of Kansas City, Missouri?

      Adopted construction codes are established as per Chapter 18 of the City Code of Ordinances, The Kansas City Building and Rehabilitation Code Articles II – XIV.

    • Are expansion tanks required for home water heaters?

      Only when required per Chapter 29, section 2903.4 2012 IRC, or per manufactures installation guidelines. This will be determined by the licensed plumber installing the tank based on conditions in the home.

    • I want to do a single family home remodel, add or remodel a bathroom, kitchen remodel, or basement finish in my home. What is the process?

      • Please provide a written scope of work letter with before/after floor plan drawings for the proposed work.  Submit the scope and drawings when you make application for permit on Compass KC. After review and approval, a building permit will be issued.  If you are doing the plumbing, electrical and HVAC work you will also need to submit permit applications for each trade, and a completed Homeowners Affidavit.
      • Basement finish projects simply require permit application with all work performed as per Information Bulletin 132.