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Building Department


Location and Contact Info:
302 N. Redbud Trail
Telephone (269) 695-0011
Fax (269) 695-0009

Permits and Codes:  What you need to know

Permit Regulations, Forms and Applications:

Mechanical and plumbing permits for the City are issued by the State of Michigan at www.michigan.gov/bcc

New Construction Information Requirements State of Michigan Building Code

No building permit will be issued until a plan review has been completed.

An application for a building permit must be accompanied by one complete set of construction specifications, including stamped and signed drawings where applicable, before a plan review will be initiated.

A complete set of plans and specifications may include but is not limited to:

  • Accurate site plan with all dimensions and all improvements.
  • Soil type and table R401.4 strength.
  • Footing detail including width, thickness, and reinforcement.
  • Foundation wall detail.
  • Foundation plate detail.
  • Typical sidewall elevation
  • Floor framing detail
  • Roof sheathing detail including underlayment.
  • Ventilation schedule for attic and crawl space.
  • Details of interior finish of garage if attached to house.
  • Header details over doors and windows.
  • Roof eave and valley ice dam protection details.
  • Certification of compliance with Michigan Energy Code
  • Truss drawings and indicate bracing requirements with TCLL and wind speed design.

The plans and specification will be reviewed as soon as possible.

Failure to provide complete details will delay processing of the plans and issuance of a permit. If corrections or clarifications are required, the permit will not be issued until such areas are resolved.

It is the responsibility of the contractor to determine the construction schedule and provide information to the building department allowing adequate time for plan review.

24-hour minimum notice is required for inspections. In the event that prior inspection commitments have been made, the inspection will be performed as close to the requested day and time as possible. No work that requires a prior inspection and approval is to be commenced until that inspection has been completed and written approval has been granted. No structure is to be occupied until the Building Department has issued a Certificate of Occupancy.

The following minimum residential inspections are required

  • R 109.1.3 Floodplain
  • R 109.1.1 Foundation
  • R 109.1.2 Plumbing, Mechanical. (done by State of Michigan) and Electrical systems.
  • R 109.1.4 Masonry base course flashing and weather resistant sheathing paper.
  • R 109.1.4 Framing (note: draftstopping and fire firestopping must be installed before this inspection.
  • R Fire resistant gypsum board prior to taping and finishing.
  • R 109.1.6 Final.

Additional inspections will be required for non-residential projects and additional may be required for residential projects.

The applicable codes, including adopted supplements and appendices, are the Michigan Residential Code, Michigan Building Code, Michigan Mechanical Code, Michigan Plumbing Code, Michigan Uniform Energy Code, International Fuel Gas Code and NFPA Codes (including the National Electric Code with Michigan Part 8 rules), International Fire Code and International Property Maintenance Code.

Climatic and Geographic Design Criteria for Buchanan:

  • Ground Snow Load: 50 pounds per square foot
  • Roof Live Load: 50 pounds per square foot
  • Wind Speed: 90 mile per hour 
  • Seismic Design Category: A
  • Weathering Index: Severe
  • Frost Line Depth: 42 inches
  • Termite Infestation: Very Heavy
  • Winter Design Temperature: 5 degrees
  • Flood Hazards: FIRM Panel #0403C April 17, 2006
  • Air Freezing Index: 1200
  • Mean Annual Temperature: 50 degrees