While most minor repairs do not require a building permit, many projects may only be performed after securing a permit from Community Development. All work will have to be inspected to ensure compliance with the City's building codes.

Owner-occupants of single family residences may do most of their own work; however, electrical service upgrades must be done by a licensed electrician. Commercial, industrial, and multi-family construction projects generally require licensed and bonded contractors.

You can find out if your project requires a building permit by contacting 311. For fee information, view the Building Permit Fee Schedule

Contractor Requirements

The City of Elgin requires a notarized letter of intent from all licensed contractors. The letter(s) of intent must be stamped with a company seal, or sealed by a notary public on company letter head. General contractors will be required to submit a letter of intent for each of his licensed sub-contractors. 

The following additional documents are required for specific contractors:

  • Roofing: A State of IL roofing license and letter of intent. 
  • Plumbing: A State of IL plumbing license with the prefix 055 and notarized letter of intent. The plumber performing the work must be present at inspection and have their 058 license on hand.
  • Sewer: A $20,000 permit bond in favor of the City of Elgin and notarized letter of intent.
  • Fire Sprinkler: A State of IL Fire Sprinkler Contractor license and notarized letter of intent. 
  • Mechanical: A $20,000 permit bond in favor of the City of Elgin, notarized letter of intent, and a contractor’s registration from any city in the State of IL that gives a written HVAC examination. Registration is not required if your project plans are sealed by an IL licensed architect or engineer who is accepting responsibility for the work.
  • Electrical: A contractor’s registration is required from any city in the State of Illinois that gives a written examination based on the National Electrical Code. A copy of the current registration must be on file with the City of Elgin.

The City of Elgin will not be able to issue any permits until the letters of intent have been received. Completed applications can be submitted via mail or in person, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

  1. Community Development

    Physical Address
    150 Dexter Court
    Elgin, IL 60120

    Phone: 847-931-5920
    Fax: 847-931-6790

    Department Hours
    Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

    Planning & Zoning Counter Review Hours
    (Planners are available for items requiring planner review and approval)
    Monday - Thursday 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
    Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.


This application is if you have smaller projects such as window replacements or a roof replacement. This permit application covers most projects that do not require a plan review and can usually be completed in less than 5 minutes. This application applies to both businesses and residential homes.

This application is if you are doing any interior remodeling, like updating or changing the space. In some cases, exterior remodeling projects also require you to complete this permit application. The remodeling permit application covers remodeling projects of all sizes for both businesses and residential homes.

This application is for the larger projects that require more oversight such as a plan review by our Community Development department and typically involve multiple contractors for framing, electrical, plumbing, and/or HVAC work being done. This application is also used for commercial/industrial tenant build-outs, as well as new commercial/industrial or new multi-family construction projects.

New Residential Construction Application
This permit application type is for new, single family home construction permits.

Business Application
This application is for new businesses to obtain a certificate of occupancy when moving into a tenant space/building or when an existing business is expanding into adjacent spaces within the building they are currently occupying.This serves as the application for certificate of occupancy and business license. 

Home Business Occupancy Application
This application is required when a person wishes to obtain a certificate of occupancy to start a home business.

Temporary Occupancy Application
This application is required when a business wishes to obtain a certificate of occupancy for a space within a building for a period of 180 days or less.

Sign Permit Application
This application is required when a business wants to install a new sign or reface an existing sign.

Check for Open Permits

Prevent delays when you sell your home! The city cannot issue a transfer stamp for a property with outstanding issues, such as an open permit. An open permit is one where either the contractors or homeowner did not call the city to conduct the final inspection. The most common type of open permit is for a fence, shed, re-roofing, or hot water heater. Enter your address at the link below to see if your property has any permits with the “APPROVED” status. If so, call 311 (from within Elgin) or (847) 931-5920 (if outside the city limits) to schedule an inspection for that permit. Or, you can email your request. Please have ready (or include) your address and permit number for faster service. Click here to check for an open permit.