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How to Apply Building Permit in the Philippines

How to Apply Building Permit in the Philippines

The legal document we need to ensure the legitimacy of our development is a building permit. Although the procedure varies from city to city and location to location, they are nonetheless quite similar. It often takes a month or two, perhaps even longer, in Metro Manila. It requires less than a month in the provinces. There are some places where it only takes a few days. Depending on the project’s size and location, the price could range from PhP15,000 to PhP200,000.

Why you need a Building Permit?

Do we require a construction permit to construct? The answer to this is quite complex since many contractors will naturally say sure, you can build without a permission just like you can park at a no parking area since it is Sunday and there aren’t any cars anyhow. So why is a building permit required? Here are some explanations:

Loan applications

If you are taking out a loan, whether it be from a bank (see here for additional information on bank loans) or the government, such as Before they disburse the first tranche of your loan, Pag-ibig (click here to learn more about the Pag-ibig loan process and here to get the Pag-ibig loan checklist) may require a building permit. They will be reassured by this that the construction financing they have requested is actually for construction and not for another purpose.

Final Meralco Electrical Service Line

The Luzon Grid’s electrical provider, Meralco, has tightened its policies recently. Although they will give you a temporary line while the house is being built, they won’t give you the final line (electrical wire) until they have a Certificate of Final Electrical Inpection (CFEI or CEI) from the city hall or municipal building where your site is located. The largest temporary line or wire size Meralco will offer is 8.0 square millimeters, or number 8 American Wire Gauge (AWG).

You would not be allowed to file for a final upgrade without the Certificate of Final Electrical Inpection (CFEI or CEI) from the City Hall or Municipal Hall of the location of your site if the service entry wire electrical design of your home is larger than this, which is typically the case. The Building Permit is required in order to obtain the CFEI or CEI.

You may also click here to check Meralco’s website on how to apply for a service line.

Professional and Legal Liability

The purpose of the construction permit is mainly to list the experts that worked on your project from start to finish. Practically 15 years of structural, electrical, mechanical, and plumbing safety is guaranteed by the professionals involved. Fly-by-night contractors and unlicensed professionals frequently have someone else sign and seal their names in the building permit in place of their own. This implies that they are not held accountable in the event of any safety issues.

Subdivision and Village Requirement

Several subdivisions and villages still forbid the use of materials and labor on your land if the building permit has not yet been released, despite the fact that certain subdivisions and villages enable construction while the building permit is still being processed.

Building Permit Processes and Requirements

Although it may differ from city to city and location to location, the building permit process is relatively similar. There is no “one stop shop” for other cities but most now has OSS including Quezon City, and documents normally migrate through various departments until it is issued. We will go over the procedure and prerequisites below to give you an idea of what to expect:

Preparation of Plans and Documents

Plans and documentation that might be required to obtain your building permit are included below. Be sure to have the following before submitting your building permit application:

Building Plans / Construction Plans where applicable

  • Lot Plan with Vicinity Map signed and sealed by a Geodetic Engineer (PhP2,000 if you do not have this yet)
  • Architectural / Civil Engineering Plans signed and sealed by an Architect / Civil Engineer
  • Structural Plans signed and sealed by a Civil Engineer
  • Plumbing Plans signed and sealed by a Master Plumber
  • Electrical Plans signed and sealed by a Professional Electrical Engineer
  • Mechanical Plans signed and sealed by a Professional Mechanical Engineer

​Supporting Documents

  • Geotechnical Soil Test Report / Soil Boring Test Report for 3 storey and above structures (PhP25,000 – PhP80,000 and up) with Photocopy of VALID PRC I.D. and current PTR of Civil Engineer with sealed specimen signature of professional
  • Project Specifications Signed and Sealed
  • Cost Estimate or Bill of Materials Signed and Sealed
  • Structural Analysis and Design Computations for 2 storey and above with Seismic or Earthquake Structural Analysis for 3-storey and above structures

Technical Documents (as needed)

  • Building Permit Forms duly accomplished with complete signature and seals
  • Electrical Permit Forms duly accomplished with complete signature and seals
  • Plumbing Permit Forms duly accomplished with complete signature and seals
  • Mechanical Permit Forms duly accomplished with complete signature and seals
  • Photocopies of VALID PRC I.D.s and CURRENT PTRs with dry seal and 3 specimen signatures of the professionals

Other documents For renovation, addition of floor or extension

  • Old Building Permit if project is for renovation, addition of floor or extension
  • Old Certificate of Occupancy if project is for renovation, addition of floor or extension
  • Previously approved Building Plans if project is for renovation, addition of floor or extension

Valid Identification Card and/or IDs

  • Photocopy of the valid I.D. of applicant – to verify identity and signature
  • Photocopy of the valid I.D. of the Lot Owner (If lot owner is not the applicant) – to verify identity and signature
  • Community Tax Certificate / Cedula Number, Date Issued and Place Issued of Applicant’s Cedula – for notary public to notarize documents
  • Community Tax Certificate / Cedula Number, Date Issued and Place Issued of Lot Owner’s Cedula (If lot owner is not the applicant) – for notary public to notarize documents
  • Photocopy of Tax Identification Number (TIN) card/1901/1902/1903/1904 (Use Corporate TIN for Coroprate Application)

​Supplemental Documents (if applicable)

  • Notarized Authorization Letter to sign, apply and process building permit for applicant (applicant’s representative)
  • Affidavit of Undertaking if necessary (Professionals certify safety of existing structure for Renovation Addition of, or Extension Projects)
  • Firewall Consent from neighbor if building a firewall on his or her side

Obtain Legal Documents

  • 2 sets Certified True Copy of Transfer Certificate of Title or TCT (about Php400) – obtained from the registry of deeds where your property is registered. (3-6 working days)
  • Real Property Tax Clearance (cost depends on value of property)
  • Tax Declaration (cost depends on value of property)
  • Tax Receipt (cost depends on value of property)
  • Affidavit of No Contractor if applicable and if under construction supervision only (Makati, Paranaque etc.)
  • Corporate Secretary’s Certification Authorizing the Signatory to sign and apply for Building Permit for Corporation
  • Deed of Absolute Sale (If sold to you and transfer of title or property has not yet been processed) or Award Notice and / or lease contract (if you rented the property) or Deed of Assignment or Donation (if property was given to you)

Obtain Area Clearance

  • Homeowner’s Association / Village Administration or Subdivision or Mall, Condominium Clearance (if inside a village or subdivision or Mall or Condominium Building) – Obtained from the Administration office of your Village or Subdivision or Mall or Building (1 day – 2 weeks)
  • Barangay Clearance to construct (PhP300 – PhP5,000 and up) – Obtained from the Barangay Hall your site is located (1 day)

Obtain Government Department Clearance for special places (if applicable)

  • MMDA clearance if beside or near waterways such as rivers and creeks
  • DPWH clearance if along National Roads and National Highways
  • DENR Environmental Clearance Certificate / ECC if site is in protected area
  • CAAP / Air Transportation Office (ATO) Height Clearance for cell sites, towers, spires and antennas and areas near            Airports
  • DOH-BHDT Clearance for telecom / cell site projects
  • PHIVOLCS clearance if near the fault line
  • DOLE Construction Safety and Health Program if applicable (For Makati, Las Pinas, Paranaque, Taytay etc.)

Apply Locational Clearance (Approx. PhP3,000 – PhP6,000)

obtained from the City Planning & Development Office at City Hall, where your site is located, Zoning Administration Unit. This is done to reassure the city or municipality where your project is being carried out that the structure you are constructing is acceptable there. E.g. It is not permitted to build a shopping mall, a private home in a business district, a school in a hazardous industrial sector, or a high-rise structure close to an airport. (1-2 weeks)

Apply  for Fire Safety Clearance (Approx.PhP5,000 – PhP8,000)

 Obtained from the City Hall at the Fire Department (3-10 working days)

Submit Clearances, Forms, Building Plans and Documents to the Engineering Department of the Office of the Building Official

Usually it takes around 1 weeks -6 weeks and wait for approval. Red tape would cost you about PhP20,000 – PhP50,000 in some cities.

Pay the Building Permit Fee

This is costs for Assessment done by the Architects and Engineers of your Municipal / City Hall. (Approx. PhP10,000)

City Tax / Contractor’s Tax

This is Tax due to the improvement / building done on the lot. (Approx. PhP10,000 – PhP35,000 and up depending on the size and cost of the structure) at the treasurer’s office.

Signing of the Building Permit by the Building official and Release of the Building Permit (1 – 3 days)

To know other construction guides, tips, and methodology for beginners, veterans, and contractors, please see here.

To know the flood prone areas in the Philippines, Top 10 Flood-Prone Areas to Live in the Philippines.

To know more about Concrete Hollow Blocks, Simple Reasons Why Hollow Blocks are Highly Used in the Philippines

To know more about Hammers and Nails, Tips for Guaranteed Best Technique for Hammering Nails

To know more about Tees and Wyes, What is the Guaranteed Best to Use: Sanitary Tee Vs Wye

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