Business

Zoning Board of Adjustment   Philadelphia Zoning specializes in Zoning Variance coordination. Whether it is a regulated Use Registration for a new business or a height bonus for a home addition, in order to get approval from the City to execute a development plan which is not expressly allowed by the Zoning Code, you must obtain letter granting you special approval from the Zoning Board of Adjustment.   There...

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Philadelphia Zoning was founded in large part to help new business owners obtain the proper zoning to operate their business. One of the most common types of projects we have worked on throughout the years has been Zoning Variance for Body Art and Tattoo Use.  Because this is a controlled use obtaining a permit always requires special approval by the Zoning Board of Adjustment.    In addition to obtaining...

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The Typology of Permits   Property development can be complicated. And if you are new to the world of city regulation and permits it may be difficult to predict exactly what you need in order to successfully, and legally complete a project.   The typology of permits is generally broken down into two categories; Building and Zoning. This is because city regulations are also separated by these terms.   The Zoning...

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Faced with Facade   There are many obstacles to overcome when changing anything about buildings in the city of Philadelphia. Chances are, change comes with a permit attached to it. Facade changes, in particular, may require more attention than your regular Building Permit. To avoid getting those annoying requests for additional information that end up costing time and money, make sure you know whether or not your project...

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What Is, What It Isn’t? The Certificate of Occupancy may be the most elusive of all permits. So we wanted to give everyone the low down on what this document is, how to obtain it, and how to know if you even need it.   A Certificate of Occupancy (CO) is, unsurprisingly, a certificate that allows you to occupy a space. More specifically, this certification denotes a change...

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Online Resources   Earlier this week our expeditors Ashley and Liz hosted an Instagram Live event where they explained the different online resources we use here at Philadelphia Zoning.   MVR (Most Valuable Resource)   Our favorite and most valued online resource is the City Atlas. The Atlas has five important functions we think you should know about.   The first and foremost value of this sacred tool is that it...

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Time is Money   When you are planning to renovate a home or start a new business, many times, the most important thing to consider is timing. So if your project involves obtaining permits or licenses from the City, it is important that you know what the different timetables are.   But before we discuss specific timetables of different permits, the first thing to know is that you will...

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What is Expediting?   An expeditor is a person who is licensed with the City to file permits and licenses on behalf of another individual. An expeditor can also create tax accounts with the city, file deeds, and register a change of address with the Office of Property Assessment.   Expeditors cannot, however, request special favors. We cannot circumvent the process or evade any rules or procedures.   It is our...

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An additional information request is sent by Licenses and Inspections whenever one of their plans examiners wants to know more about your project.  Getting this letter is not an indication of failure, it is actually considered a standard response as requirements for permits can be as unpredictable as the weather. However, in the off chance you do not receive a request for additional information, you deserve...

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Do It Yourself   The City’s Department of Licenses and Inspections (L&I)  has an online platform called Eclipse which allows users to do a number of things online. This tool is great for license renewals including trade license and housing rental licenses. Once you set-up an account you can apply for new licenses, renew old licenses, and schedule inspections for existing permit applications all without every stepping...

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