Building Department 

Supervised by a state-licensed construction official, some of the responsibilities of the department include:

  • Issuing building permits for construction, demolition, remodeling and repair of structures, upon the approval of applications for same.
  • Issuing permits for signs, commercial, air-conditioning, oil burners and oil tanks;
  • Performing inspections for and issuing certificates of continued occupancy and certificates of habitability (for rentals);
  • Investigating complaints of violations of Village codes and ordinances dealing with building codes;
  • Coordinating all regulatory inspections relating to buildings and structures which are not vested in any other department or division. The department makes all building inspections authorized or required by general law or the Building and Property Maintenance code of the Village and enforces the provisions of such laws and ordinances.

Permits must be obtained before that start of work except that emergency replacement of furnaces, boilers and water heaters will be allowed as long as the Building Department is notified of the replacement at the time of installation and permits are obtained within five days thereafter.

The Building and Code Enforcement Department is located in Village Hall. Office hours are 8:30 am to 4:30 pm Monday through Friday. Permits are issued each day until 3:00 pm.

It is the goal of the South Orange Building Department to ensure that all construction is code compliant for the safety and welfare of the township’s residents and visitors.  

Uniform Construction Code

The Uniform Construction Code is administrated by the Construction Official, and includes the Building, Electrical, Plumbing, and Fire Subcode Officials and Inspectors, which serve to enforce the various codes adopted by the Uniform Construction Code. Construction permits are required for most projects in strict accordance with the requirements of the State of New Jersey Uniform Construction Code, N.J.A.C. 5:23. 

Learn more about our Code Enforcement Division here.

Permits, Applications & Guidelines

  • For permit applications; see the  the Permit Application page under Building Department.
  • If you need a permit, the permit process and fees will be explained to you by department personnel at the time of your visit or your telephone call, and you will be given the forms that you will need to apply for a permit.
  • "How do I?"  - South Orange has a list of comprehensive guidelines for contractors and homeowners alike.  Click here.
  • Homeowners/Contractors must post the placard given with every permit in a conspicuous location on the job site and keep the approved plans and specifications at the building site.


Inspections are scheduled for the technical field in which they are required.  Every effort is made to accommodate the schedules within the time the inspectors are available.  It is important to be ready for the inspection during the time in which it is scheduled.  If an inspection is missed, it will have to be scheduled for the next time in which there is an opening.

Construction inspections are scheduled by calling 973-378-7715, extension 7700, between the hours of 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM.  Please have your permit number ready when you call. Do not leave a request for inspection on the department’s voicemail.