Change of Occupancy

What is it?

You need a Change of Occupancy Permit to change the building code occupancy from one occupancy classification to another occupancy classification such as commercial to residential and residential to commercial.

Examples of common change of use projects are; existing office buildings that are being changed into a school/daycare, a house that is being changed into an office or retail building, a warehouse building that is being changed into automotive repair or a storage building into a church.

How Much Does it Cost?

Fees are based on the value of your project. You pay a plan review fee when you submit your plans and the rest when you pick up your permit. See the Fee Schedule (A-Z) page to download the Change of Occupancy Fee Schedule for fee related information. For a specific estimate please contact the Permit Technicians at 425-556-2473.

How Long Does It Take?

We try to finish our initial review of change of occupancy permits in 42 business days from submittal. How long it takes to get the final permit depends on how complex your project is and how many corrections, if any, you need to make.

Steps to Get Your Permit

1. Research
Get your property information. Find property information to help you plan your project. Use our Property Viewer Interactive Map to find your building history, zone, and related information.

Determine restrictions to your project. Research the Redmond Zoning Code (RZC) to determine what occupancies are allowed in the building and what land uses are allowed in that zoning area.   

Find incentives for your project. Research the City’s different Green Building Incentives that might apply to your project.

Determine if you need a land use permit.  In addition to the change of occupancy, if your proposal is changing the use from a land use perspective, a land use permit may be required. Please confirm with the Planner On Call at 425-556-2494 or by email at planneroncall@redmond.gov.

Request a Pre-Application Meeting (optional). We recommend a pre-application meeting for very complex projects, including buildings with unusual structural systems, substantial alterations, or work in environmentally critical areas or shorelines.  Pre-application meetings are scheduled on Thursday's.  Pre-Application Conference Tip Sheet.

2. Start Permit Application
When changing the occupancy you need to contact the plans examiner of the day to schedule an intake appointment. The plans examiner will create a plan case number for you to use to upload your plans.

Apply for exemptions. You may need an exemption if your project is located in an environmentally critical area or near the shoreline.

Prepare your plans. Plans should be electronic and should be to scale and easy to read.

Fill out forms:
Change of Occupancy Permit Packet

Coordinate with other agencies. You may need permits or approvals from other agencies. These are the most common agencies you may need to work with for your permit type:

3. Submit Plans
To schedule an intake appointment you can go online, use our scheduling button or call 425-556-2473.

schedule button 

Tips for a Successful Intake Meeting 

Pay fee. Plan Review fees are due at permit application. The fees are calculated based on your project value.

If applicable, make corrections that were given to you at the counter and resubmit your plans. Incomplete applications and plans submitted on paper will be deemed incomplete and not processed.

If comments are received during plan review, you will be sent a correction letter via e-mail with instructions on how to upload the corrected set of plans and applicable information through our E-track portal

4. Get Permit
Pick up or print your permit. You will be contacted when your plans are approved. You can pick up your permit and approved plans at the Development Service Center with a blank USB drive, or log into the E-Track Portal where you can print your permit and approved plans.

5. Pay fees. You will need to pay all outstanding fees to pick up or print your permit.
Get related permits. You may need to get additional permits or approvals from other departments.

6. Schedule Inspection
Request an inspection.  See the E-Track Portal page to schedule an inspection online or use the phone at 425-556-2435 and the pin number on the permit to request an inspection.

7. Complete Project
You will receive a certificate of occupancy if you have changed the use of the Building Occupancy of an existing space and/or building.  

Close your permit. Your permit information will be archived in our electronic document management system.