USBC 108.1

The following is an excerpt from the 2015 Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC). It is important to note that this is not a local code, but rather a Virginia statewide mandated code.

The USBC Section 108.1 says:


108.1 When applications are required. Application for
a permit shall be made to the building official and a permit
shall be obtained prior to the commencement of any of the
following activities, except that applications for
emergency construction, alterations or equipment
replacement shall be submitted by the end of the first
working day that follows the day such work commences.
In addition, the building official may authorize work to
commence pending the receipt of an application or the
issuance of a permit.

1. Construction or demolition of a building or
structure. Installations or alterations involving (i)
the removal or addition of any wall, partition or
portion thereof, (ii) any structural component,
(iii) the repair or replacement of any required
component of a fire or smoke rated assembly,
(iv) the alteration of any required means of egress
system, (v) water supply and distribution system,
sanitary drainage system or vent system, (vi)
electric wiring, (vii) fire protection system,
mechanical systems, or fuel supply systems, or
(viii) any equipment regulated by the USBC.

2. For change of occupancy, application for a
permit shall be made when a new certificate of
occupancy is required by the VEBC.

3. Movement of a lot line that increases the hazard
to or decreases the level of safety of an existing
building or structure in comparison to the
building code under which such building or
structure was constructed.

4. Removal or disturbing of any asbestos
containing materials during the construction or
demolition of a building or structure, including

108.2 Exemptions from application for permit.
Notwithstanding the requirements of Section 108.1,
application for a permit and any related inspections shall
not be required for the following; however, this section
shall not be construed to exempt such activities from other applicable requirements of this code. In addition, when an
owner or an owner’s agent requests that a permit be issued
for any of the following, then a permit shall be issued and
any related inspections shall be required.

1. Installation of wiring and equipment that (i)
operates at less than 50 volts, (ii) is for broadband
communications systems, (iii) is exempt under
Section 102.3(1) or 102.3(4), or (iv) is for
monitoring or automation systems in dwelling
units, except when any such installations are
located in a plenum, penetrate fire rated or smoke
protected construction or are a component of any
of the following:

1.1. Fire alarm system.
1.2. Fire detection system.
1.3. Fire suppression system.
1.4. Smoke control system.
1.5. Fire protection supervisory system.
1.6. Elevator fire safety control system.
1.7. Access or egress control system or delayed
egress locking or latching system.
1.8. Fire damper.
1.9. Door control system.

2. One story detached structures used as tool and
storage sheds, playhouses or similar uses,
provided the building area does not exceed 256
square feet (23.78 m2) and the structures are not
classified as a Group F-1 or H occupancy.

3. Detached prefabricated buildings housing the
equipment of a publicly regulated utility service,
provided the floor area does not exceed 150
square feet (14 m2).

4. Tents or air-supported structures, or both, that
cover an area of 900 square feet (84 m2 ) or less,
including within that area all connecting areas or
spaces with a common means of egress or
entrance, provided such tents or structures have
an occupant load of 50 or less persons.

5. Fences of any height unless required for
pedestrian safety as provided for by Section
3306, or used for the barrier for a swimming

6. Concrete or masonry walls, provided such walls
do not exceed six feet in height above the
finished grade. Ornamental column caps shall
not be considered to contribute to the height of
the wall and shall be permitted to extend above
the six feet height measurement.

7. Retaining walls supporting less than three feet of
unbalanced fill that are not constructed for the
purpose of impounding Class I, II or III-A liquids
or supporting a surcharge other than ordinary
unbalanced fill.

8. Swimming pools that have a surface area not
greater than 150 square feet (13.95 m2), do not
exceed 5,000 gallons (19 000 L) and are less than
24 inches (610 mm) deep.

9. Signs under the conditions in Section H101.2 of
Appendix H.

10. Replacement of above-ground existing LP-gas
containers of the same capacity in the same
location and associated regulators when installed
by the serving gas supplier.

11. Flagpoles 30 feet (9144 mm) or less in height.

12. Temporary ramps serving dwelling units in
Group R-3 and R-5 occupancies where the
height of the entrance served by the ramp is no
more than 30 inches (762 mm) above grade.

13. Construction work deemed by the building
official to be minor and ordinary and which does
not adversely affect public health or general
The complete text of the USBC Codes can be found at this link:
Virginia Construction Code

How to Apply for a Permit

To learn how to apply for a permit, please click this link: Applying for a permit