General Contact Number: (530) 621-5567

Building Services

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)
How to Obtain a Building Permit

Obtaining a Building Permit

Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU), Granny Flat, In-Law Quarters, or any residence that is in addition to an existing residence on a parcel is an ADU. General requirements are the same as the construction of a primary residence with only a few exceptions.

Maximum square footage of living space is dependent on lot size. A garage may be attached to the dwelling and not considered part of the maximum square footage of living space. If the ADU is attached to the primary dwelling, the ADU may not exceed 50% of the primary dwelling's square footage.  
If a manufactured home is used as a second dwelling, please go to our manufactured home page for additional requirements.

  1. Building Services permit application requires the following:

    • Complete the three part application and sign where applicable (signature must be verified by office personnel). If you are applying as owner-builder, you must be the owner of record and complete part four of the multi part application. If property ownership was recently changed a copy of the grant deed may be required at time of application.
    • When other than the owner or licensed contractor is applying for the permit, the second half of part four of the form must be completed, giving authority to sign as the owner's agent.
    • If the property is within the architecturally controlled area of El Dorado Hills Community Services District or Cameron Park Community Services District, architectural approval of the plans from the district prior to permit issuance is a requirement. Failure to obtain approval may delay issuance of your permit.
    • Check with your individual association for any restrictions that may affect your construction even though Building Services does not enforce these restrictions.
    • Contractors acting as agent for the owner must have a current active California state contractors license, worker's compensation coverage, and a current El Dorado County Business License.  
  2. When not served by public water/sewer, you must submit the perc test, septic design and well production report to the Environmental Management. This may only be submitted with or after building permit application.
  3. If your parcel is located at or above the 4000 foot elevation, a bear resistant garbage enclosure will be required. Contact Environmental Management for additional information.
  4. An Encroachment permit is needed if you are connecting your new driveway to a County-maintained road. See the county  Fire Safe Regulations for driveway information.
  5. Contact Planning Services for additional information concerning an ADU. 

ADU Plan Review Guidelines

Building Services will not accept an Application for a Residential Building Permit unless the Minimum Criteria listed below are met. Use the following as a guideline for your submittal.  

Submit two complete sets of plans that include the following, PLUS one additional floor plan:

  1. PLOT PLAN (minimum scale I "=20')
    • This plan must show the entire parcel and indicate and identify actual distances from all property lines and/or easements to structures, existing and proposed. Indicate all easements on the plan
    • The plot plan shall also indicate distances between structures.
    • Locate septic system(s), propane tank(s) and any other buildings.
    • Indicate slope of lot.
    • Contour lines (@ 1 ',2' or 5' vertical increments) must be shown for the building site and/or disturbed area and extend 20 feet beyond or to the property line, whichever is less.
    • Similar contour lines must also be shown for the full length of a new driveway, if applicable.
    • A profile for any new driveway on site. Also, public road to driveway improvements shown and dimensioned. Indicate the finished floor elevations for garage floor and first floor .
    • The proposed method of compliance with  State Fire Safe regulations regarding driveway slope, width, surface, turnouts and fuel modification shall be shown on these plans.
    • Site Design Measures for Post Construction Storm Water Requirements.
    • Any proposed grading is to be delineated in conformance with the County Design and Improvement Standards Manual.
    • If the plot plan, drawn as required above, is too large to fit on a 24" x 36" sheet of paper, a SITE PLAN, drawn to a small scale, shall be provided which locates the area covered by the PLOT PLAN on the parcel.
  2. TITLE BLOCK giving: owner's name and mailing address, job site address, and assessor's parcel number. Include a summary of square footage identifying each proposed occupancy.
  3. FOUNDATION PLAN with details.
  4. FLOOR PLAN (fully dimensioned) illustrating proposed sizes and uses of rooms. Show braced wall panel locations or engineered shear walls (if applicable).
  5. FLOOR FRAMING PLAN with details (include deck framing if applicable).
  6. ROOF FRAMING PLAN. (Include the truss manufacturer's specifications if a roof truss system is used. Must be reviewed and also signed by the project engineer if applicable)
  7. ELEVATIONS including front, rear, and both sides.
  8. ELECTRICAL/MECHANICAL PLAN. This may be illustrated on the Floor Plan. Include a gas piping plan (if applicable.)
  9. CALIFORNIA CEC TITLE 24 ENERGY LOSS REPORT. Includes Form CF-1R and “Mandatory Measure Checklist”. This report will also decide the required solar system size. 
  11. RESIDENTIAL FIRE SPRINKLER SYSTEM. The system shall be designed by an appropriate California-licensed professional.
  12. NAME AND WET-SIGNATURE (original) of the person responsible for preparing plans. (Plans requiring design by a California-Registered Architect or Engineer must have a seal and signature and the license number with a current expiration date.)

Please note: one additional floor plan is needed for the county Assessor's Office before permit issuance.

An application missing any items will be deemed incomplete and will not be accepted until all needed items are provided. This may affect application fees and codes since the operative date of application will be the date on which a complete application is received.

CHECK OUR PLAN REVIEW GUIDELINES FOR MORE DETAILS ON THE PLAN CHECK PROCESS. The guideline, while not all-inclusive, is intended to help you prepare residential plans that are essentially "complete".