Limited Over-the-Counter Permit Services

Track permits through our 
Online Permit Tracking System

If you need a permit for a small business, you may qualify for expedited review under Proposition H. Visit our Prop H Website for more information.

Changes to the Over-the-Counter Appointment Process

Starting Monday, November 2, we are adding more appointments for customers to drop off Over-the-Counter with plans permit applications. We have opened a waitlist for these appointments and qualifying customers can sign up here

Limited in-person Over-the-Counter permit services are provided at 49 South Van Ness Avenue (49 SVN) from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday by appointment or on a first-come, first-served basis only. Customers will enter the 49 South Van Ness building from Van Ness Avenue.

The following services are available:

  • 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. Monday to Friday: Over-the-Counter without plans permit processing (first-come, first-served)​
  • 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Monday to Thursday: Fire-only permit application drop-off (first-come, first-served)
  • 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday to Friday: Over-the-Counter with plans permit application drop-off (by appointment). Permit pick-up (job card and/or comments) 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. 

Over-the-Counter (OTC) with and without plans permit applications

Over-the-Counter with and without plans ​​permit applications will be accepted during limited in-person service. For more information about Over-the-Counter permits, visit

Please note that projects associated with City Landmarks or properties that have Block Book Notification requests may not be eligible for OTC service. 

7:30 to 9:30 a.m. from Monday through Friday – Over-the-Counter without plans permits

Customers can apply for Over-the-Counter permits without plans by dropping in at 49 South Van Ness within this two-hour window. We can accommodate 35 customers on a first-come, first-served basis. Each customer can submit a maximum of 2 permits.

Please remember to bring completed forms and/or supporting documents with you. A DBI plan checker will review your application to ensure it is eligible for permit submission and processing. You will enter the ground floor to complete the permit issuance process and then proceed to the second floor to complete the payment process.

For more information on Over-the-Counter and fire-only permits, visit

Trades permits and street space permits are not accepted during the limited service.

Trades permits can be filed online or with DBI staff by licensed contractors for electrical, plumbing, and mechanical or boiler-to-operate permits. Visit here for more information on how to file your trades permit. The Department of Public Works is processing all Street Space permits online. You can file your Street Space permit here.

9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Monday through Thursday – Fire-Only Permits

During this time, customers can drop off permit applications that require only Fire Department review. Click here for examples of fire-only scopes of work. Fire Department staff can accommodate 25 customers daily, first-come, first-served. Each customer can submit a maximum of 2 permits per day.

9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday – Over-the-Counter with plans by appointment

If you have a new permit application for an Over-the-Counter with plans permit, you can schedule an appointment to submit your permit application in paper HERE. Customers are limited to one appointment per day, and we accept a maximum of two permit applications for each appointment scheduled.

Changes to the Over-the-Counter with Plans appointment process

We are adding more appointments for customers to drop off Over-the-Counter with plans permit applications. We have opened up a waitlist for these appointments and qualifying customers can sign up here

What to Expect When Onsite

Upon arriving at 49SVN for your OTC with plans appointment, you will first visit the Intake counter for initial processing on the ground floor. You will then be directed to the DBI plan checker counter to confirm that your filing qualifies as OTC with plans. You will drop off the plans for review, and it will be routed to plan review staff for processing. Once review has been completed, you will be contacted with payment information so you can pay for your permit prior to picking it up.


Directions to the 49 SVN Building Entrance:

Customers can enter 49 South Van Ness Avenue from Van Ness Avenue via the paseo in the above photo. Customers should form a line using the social distance markers to wait their turn to enter the building through the doors pictured above.

You can pick up your permit during this window after we’ve contacted you that your permit is ready for pick-up. For more information, visit

To complete the permit issuance process, payment is required prior to picking up your permit. You will receive an email invoice with information on how to pay online from DBI. For more information, visit

Revision Drop-Off for Hardcopy Building Permits Requested by Planning Department 

If you have an existing Building Permit Application that was originally submitted in hardcopy, you may submit revised plans directly to the Planning Department without an appointment. Customers should come to the 49 South Van Ness main entrance on Van Ness to drop-off the plans in the boxes labeled “CPC Revision/Drop-Off” between 7:30 am and 3:30 pm. Instructions for dropping off your revised plans:

• Provide two full plan sets of revised plans

• Write the Building Permit Application Number along the side edge of each set of plans

• Date the plans with the resubmittal date

Revised plans will be routed to the Planning Department within two days of drop-off, and your assigned Planner will review the plans within approximately one week of the plans being routed to Planning. If you choose to proceed with Planning Department review of your revisions in hardcopy, you will be removed from the electronic plan review queue.

Completing the Necessary Forms

You will need to complete permit application Form 3/8 to file an OTC permit. Select and print the Building Form 3/8 using legal 8.5 X 14" paper size and print application on both sides. Visit here for a list of the forms required by DBI and other permitting departments.

What to expect when you are on site:

  • You will be required to wear a face covering and stay 6 feet apart from others at all times.
  • You should have completed permit application forms (found here) and supporting documents with you for submission. We want to issue your permit as soon as we can, so please make sure your submissions are complete. Incomplete submissions will result in delays and may require you to come back.
  • Provide your contact information to DBI so we can contact you.