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Building and Code Enforcement Frequently Asked Questions




How can I find out the status of my building plan/permit?


To know the status of your building permit, you can go to Permit Search, our online permit system, or call our main phone line, 780-7350.


How do I schedule a building inspection?


To schedule a building inspection, call 780.7361 or come in to City Hall to speak with someone at the Counter Services.



What plans and permit records are available for my property?


  • Permits issued after 1985 are tracked in Permit Database by building address and permit number.
  • Permits issued in 1985 and before are stored on Microfilm filed by Building Address.


  • For Active Permits paper plans are maintained  in Building Office filed by address and permit number.
  • Final Permits issued after 2002 images are maintained in optical database by permit number.
  • Final Permits issued in 2001 and before are stored on Microfilm filed by Building Address.

How do I get the permit history of my property?


To get permit history, you can go to Permit Search, our online permit system, call 780-7350 or come in to Counter Services at City Hall. You search may require searching through the Microfiche records at Maps & Records Counter Services.


How do I get a building permit?


Go to Permits


How do I apply for an online permit?

  The City does not currently have system to allow permit applications on-line.  Watch for this service in the future.

How do I schedule a One-Stop appointment?


To schedule a One Stop appointment, call 780.7350.
For One-Stop appointment information go to One-Stop Counter


How can I find out about current Building Codes?


Current information on Codes and Standards Building Codes


How do I contact a Building Inspector?


To speak to the building department, call our general line 780-7350 or find direct contact information for phone and email go to Contact Us



How many people may live in a house in Redwood City?
  The City of Redwood City does not regulate the number of people that may live in a house.  California case law has established that cities and counties may not say what constitutes a family.  Therefore, as long as there are no Health and Safety violations, the City does not limit how many people may live in a home.


How many cars can be parked at a house/street?

There is no specific limit on the number of cars permitted, however all cars must be parked in legal paved parking spaces and must be currently register. If the vehicles are operable (currently register with tags affixed, and able to legally operate on a California highway); they can be parked on the public street, in a private driveway or garage, or in the backyard. They cannot be parked in the front yard where you would normally find landscaping (such as a lawn area).


Generally, the public may park legally on any public street. Redwood City Code Section 20.95 Section 20.95 requires that vehicles must move every 3 days.   To report a vehicle that is parked on public property and has not moved in over 3 days call 650-780-7150.


Inoperable vehicles (this includes those registered as non-ops) must be stored out of public or private view, such as in an enclosed building (like garage). To report an inoperable vehicle that is in public view but parked on private property, please call 650-780-7577.

A good neighbor would not want to abuse the rights of others by having too many vehicles taking up parking in the street that we all share and a good neighbor would not want to have a lot of vehicles on their property that might adversely affect the property values of the neighborhood. For more information, see our Brochure or please contact Code Enforcement at 780-7350.



How long I can park my RV at my house?
  The City Code specifies that you may legally park an operable RV (currently registration tags and able to operate on a California highway) on your driveway or in your backyard as long as you like.  Please keep in mind that in order to be a good neighbor, it is a good idea not to park within 6' side yard or rear yard setback areas (park at least 6' from these property lines).  You cannot live in RV, (except in a mobile home park).  For more information, please contact Code Enforcement at 780-7350.


How many animals may I have at my property?

The City Code limits the number of animals any household may house or keep in the City. 

Dogs and Cats: 

You many keep: up to two (2) dogs; or, one (1) dog and up to three (3) cats; or, two (2) dogs and up to two (2) cats; or, up to four (4) cats at any property.

Fowl and Rabbits:
You may keep up to three (3) live fowl (chickens, roosters less than four (4) months old, geese, ducks, turkeys or similar fowl); or up to three (3) rabbits; or up to a combination of up to three (3) fowl or rabbits at any property.

Other Animals:

No stallion, swine, bull, ram, goat, monkey, reptile, or other animals not typically domesticated may be kept at any property.



Can I live in my garage?
  No, it is illegal and unsafe to live in any garage.  According to our City Code, it is against the law to live in a garage at any time.  Living in a garage may be dangerous due to fire hazards and carbon monoxide poisoning from gas fired appliances (like a water heater or furnace).  You may be able to get a permit to convert a garage into a living space, as an addition to your home.  You will have to provide additional covered parking.  For more information, see out Brochure, contact Code Enforcement at 780-7350 or please contact the Planning Division for additional requirements at 780-7234.



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