Building and Permitting

Monroe County Specialty Licenses (Certificates of Competency holders):

The State of Florida has passed and the Governor has signed a Bill (Bill and related laws can be found in links below) that will prohibit Monroe County from issuing certain Certificate of Competency Specialty Contractor Licenses.  We are sorry to announce that effective July 1, 2021 we can no longer issue certain new Certificate of Competency Specialty Contractor Licenses and those who currently hold an Active Certificate of Competency will be unable to renew once the license expires November 1, 2021.  Please be aware this is out of the control of Monroe County.  (See Monroe County Code 6-240(b) for reference to expiration date.)

Therefore as of July 1, 2021: (updated 7/2/2021)

  • Specialty Contractors impacted by HB735 will be able to apply for and be issued permits until October 31, 2021. 
  • Specialty Contractors will be allowed to submit any revisions necessary, to complete the work covered under an active permit until October 31, 2021.
  • Specialty Contractors impacted by HB735 will be able to finish their ACTIVE issued permits to obtain inspections up until October 31, 2021, when their existing specialty contractor license expires and will not be renewed.  
  • Specialty Contractors impacted by HB735 will not be able to be listed as a sub-contractor on any building permits with the Monroe County Building Department after October 31, 2021.

Based upon review of the Bill with Monroe County Legal Department the link below includes the bill with referenced laws on permitting, color coded to match a color coded list of specialty license holders.  The specialty license types and 326 specialty contractors (shown in red on the attachment) that the County will no longer be able to register .  

We encourage these Specialty Contractors impacted by HB735 to visit the State of Florida Licensing DBPR website for licensing information the State of Florida has authority over to perhaps become a State licensed contractor:   My Florida License - DBPR State Licensing 

Please feel free to contact our office with any questions or concerns by email at or by phone at 305 289-2583.

Again, the County did not support this State law and did everything we could to stop it. 

We realize that this new law has some harsh effects. We question if those effects were what the Legislature actually intended but we are bound to follow the law as written. Because the new law has conflicting provisions, including but not limited to different effective dates for different sections of the bill, the County will be seeking an Attorney General’s Opinion to clarify the new law. The BOCC will consider the County Attorney’s request for an Attorney General’s Opinion at the July 21st BOCC meeting. 

Permit Applications and Review

The Building Department intakes and issues permits for all types of development, including plan reviews by planning, environmental, structural, plumbing, mechanical, electric, floodplain, and fire. 

Use the plan review matrix to see permit types, the various disciplines that review each permit type, and estimated turnaround times for permit submittals.

Permit Applications

Services are provided between 8:30 am and 3:00 pm at each permitting office. 

Plans examiners, inspectors, planners and biologists are now available for meetings with customers at our offices. Please keep in mind that many personnel travel between offices, perform inspections, and have other scheduled meetings. Therefore we are highly encouraging you to make an appointment. We will do our best to meet without an appointment however unscheduled meetings cannot be guaranteed.

Calculate the estimated amount of your payment using the fee estimator. If the fee amount you submit isn’t correct, it will be adjusted at permit issuance or you will be asked to mail in the difference.


Call 305-295-5160 to request an inspection. 

For the safety of you and our inspectors:

  • Please use electronic communication and social distancing before and during inspections. Inspectors will call the contact phone number associated with the permit prior to their arrival.  
  • Have plans ready and open to pertinent pages for all inspections to occur at the site.  
  • Forms and affidavits will NOT be accepted in the field.  
  • For items such as AC change-outs, size of the breaker in the panel, a photo may be requested by the inspector.

6-Month Permit Extension Due to COVID-19

Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order Number 20-52 on March 9, 2020 declaring a state of emergency because of COVID-19 which allows the Building Official to extend Building Permits and the Planning Director to extend Development Orders.   This Executive Order has been extended multiple times, most recently Executive Order 21-94.

All Building Permits and Development Orders active on March 9, 2020 are eligible to receive an additional 6 months to receive a passed inspection (once a passed inspection occurs then the permit would again be subject to the continuing 180-day passed inspection cycle.) 

The permit holder is required to notify the county in writing (email is acceptable) and identify the specific permit/development order of their intent to exercise this extension no later than 3:00 p.m., September 24, 2021.  

Building Permits, for example, had an inspection due by April 2 (after March 9,) then the requirement to have that inspection would be extended 6 months to October 2.

Please send Building Permit extension requests to Sebben-Crystal@MonroeCounty-FL.Gov or Monroe County Building Department, 102050 Overseas Highway, Key Largo, FL 33037,  Attn: Crystal Sebben – Permit Extension.

Certificate of Occupancy (CO)

Staff will contact permit holders who are ready to receive a CO via email.

Additional Information on Permitting

Outside Agencies Approvals

Prior to commencing construction, the contractor, owner, or builder must first apply to obtain a permit. Obtaining a permit may require the interaction and approval of several agencies outside of the Building Department; with small exceptions, each of these agencies charges fees for their review procedures. The Building Department works to coordinate the involvement of other agencies in the permitting process to obtain a building permit in the most expedient manner while maintaining the county’s high level of quality. This service is not a substitute for a customer’s responsibility to interact with all participating agencies.


Permitting Process for Sewer Tie-In

Public (Commercial) Swimming Pools

Parking of Vehicles/Watercraft

Shipping/Storage Containers

Federal Rules for Renovating & Painting Older Buildings

The Environmental Protection Agency has rules regarding the renovation and repair of painted surfaces in buildings built prior to 1978 or in buildings with children. Contractors removing windows or painting must be certified and must follow certain safety procedures. These rules only require safety procedures, not testing or removing lead-based paint. Property managers and contractors can be fined $38,000 a day for violating these rules.

Additional Agencies

Depending upon the location and use of the proposed improvement, the following agencies may also be involved in the processing of a permit

Mission Statement

The mission of the Building Department is to protect public health and safety, property, and the environment by providing an efficient, effective, and considerate permitting and code administration system, in accordance with the Monroe County Code and Florida statutes consistent with and furthering the Monroe County Comprehensive Plan.