5. Construction and Inspection

Step 5 of the development review process is the inspection process. For all the steps, visit the Development Process Overview.


Land Development Services (LDS) Inspections

  • Schedule, Change or Cancel an Inspection online or call 703-631-5101, TTY 711.
  • Check Inspection Status: by permit | by address
  • Scheduling use permits (certificates of occupancy):
    •  Residential (RUPs): call 703-631-5101, TTY 711.
    •  Non-residential (nonRUPs): call 703-222-1082, TTY 711.

After-Hour Electrical Inspections are available at additional cost and can be requested by filling out this online form at least 48 hours prior to the inspection date. If you have questions, call 703-631-5101, TTY 711.

Commercial Third Party Inspections Program is available for most commercial inspections.  Learn more or call 703-631-5101, TTY 711.

Cross connection inspections are performed periodically on all commercial properties to ensure backflow protection; learn more about cross connections.

Elevator and escalator inspections must be inspected twice a year. More information on the Elevator Program.

Residential third party inspections are available to pre-approved registered design professionals in-lieu of a county inspector. To submit a request, complete the online form. If you have questions, call 703-631-5101, TTY 711.

The Special Inspections Program requires owners of qualifying projects to retain a registered design professional to conduct inspections of building elements requiring special expertise. Learn more or call 703-631-5101, TTY 711.

Fire Marshal's Office (FMO) Inspections

Scheduling an Inspection/Test. Acceptance inspections and tests may be scheduled as follows:

It is the responsibility of the owner to obtain a certificate of occupancy for a building shell prior to any tenant occupancies. For Groups A (assembly), E (educational), H (high-hazard), I (institutional) or R-1 (hotels, motels), the owner must request a pre-occupancy inspection by a Fire Marshal inspector prior to applying for the certificate of occupancy (either before or after the building final inspection). To schedule a pre-occupancy inspection, contact the Fire Inspections Branch at 703-246-4849. Thereafter, a post-occupancy inspection is always required.


Additional inspections may be required by the Health Department in addition to those mentioned above. The end goal of this phase is a Certificate of Occupancy and a Residential Use Permit or a Non-Residential Use Permit.

Staff is Available for Assistance

County staff is available on-site in the Customer Information Center or via phone at the following numbers:

  • Zoning: Planner of the Day, 703-324-5387/5372, TTY 711
  • Site and Subdivision Plans: Engineer of the Day, 703-324-2268, TTY 711
  • Building Permits: Permit Application Center, 703-222-0801, TTY 711
  • Building Code Questions, 703-631-5101, TTY 711
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