Frequently Asked Questions

Plans Review and Inspections Director

Peter Ahrens
(865) 215-3669

400 Main St., Suite 505
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Please send email to
or call 865-215-2999.
Where are you located?

The City of Knoxville Plans Review and Inspection Division is located on the fifth floor of the City County Building Suite 505. The main entrance to the City County Building is located at 400 Main Street.

Where can I park?

Parking is no longer available in the City County Building to the public. Public parking lots are located near the City County Building on Main Street and other streets surrounding the building.

When is a permit required?

Permits are required for any work over $100.00.

When must plans be submitted for review?

Plans must be submitted for all commercial projects and for new/addition residential.

What is the status of my plans review?

You can obtain the status of a plans review by calling the Interactive Voice Response System (IVR) or Plans Review and Permit Inquiry 24 hours a day at 865-215-4830. Simply locate your project number on your Plans Review Application, in the upper left corner, and follow the prompts given by the IVR. You may also call the Plans Review and Inspections Division during office hours, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., at 865-215-2999. To check your status online go to

What is my permit number?

Permit numbers can be found on the permit print out in the upper left corner. When using your permit number with the Interactive Voice Response System (IVR) or Plans Review and Permit Inquiry, you only use the numeric portion of your permit number.

Can an Owner be issued a Commercial Building Permit?

State of Tennessee License Contractors are required for commercial building permits. An owner can be issued a permit without a licensed contractor if the valuation of the work being done is under $25,000 and the plans have been approved by the City of Knoxville Plans Review and Inspections Division. No sub-work permits (Electrical, Plumbing, Gas/Mechanical) will be issued to an owner for commercial work.

Can a Residential Homeowner be issued a Building Permit?

Homeowners can be issued building permits for their primary residence (properties for rent/sale/lease do not qualify) if the plans have been approved by the City of Knoxville Plans Review and Inspections Division. Homeowners can also be issued a sub-work permit(electrical, plumbing, gas/mechanical) provided the homeowner provides proof that they live in the home and sign an owner's affidavit stating the owner is actually doing the work.

Who can be issued an Electrical, Plumbing, or Gas/Mechanical permit?

Only sub-contractors with a current City of Knoxville License and bonded in his/her respected trade can be issued sub-work permits. A homeowner who lives in the home and signs an owner affidavit stating they will be doing the work can also be issued a sub-work permit.