Building and Trade Inspections

Once your permits have been approved, you must schedule building and trade inspections to ensure the safety and proper progress of the project. It is the responsibility of the permit holder or the permit holder’s representative to schedule inspections.

Ladders, scaffolds, and testing equipment required to complete inspections must be provided by the permit holder. The person or team present for any inspection must have copies (paper or digital) of all approved plans and support documentation (approved permit, plat, building plans, placards, etc.).

Notify Miss Utility at least 48 hours prior to beginning any excavation work: 1-800-257-7777.

NOTE: To schedule an inspection you must use the Permit Arlington customer portal.

Canceling or rescheduling an inspection on the inspection day will result in a re-inspection fee and prevent you from scheduling additional inspections.

Scheduling Inspections and Checking Results

The following applies to Residential Building, Commercial Building, Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing inspections.

Scheduling

  • Schedule via the Permit Arlington customer portal. Instructions for using the Permit Arlington customer portal: Log into Permit Arlington Search for the permit number in the upper right corner
  • Click on the permit number, note only permits that are issued awaiting inspections can schedule inspections
  • Click on “Record Info”
  • Click on “Inspections”
  • Click on “Schedule or Request an Inspection”
  • Select the day of the inspection. Note, we cannot provide a time or time window for the inspection while scheduling it.
    • Starting on July 5, inspections requested before 5 p.m. will be completed within 24 hours. Inspections requested after 5 p.m. will be completed within 48 hours. 
  • For fire and energy inspections, you will need to provide a contact name and phone number. An Inspection Services Division staff member or the assigned energy inspector will contact you to coordinate and finalize the date and time of the inspection. 

If you need to schedule multiple inspections or inspections across different permits, you will need to follow these steps for each inspection and permit separately.

Checking results

  • Log into Permit Arlington
  • Search for the permit number in the upper right corner
  • Click on the permit number
  • Click on “Record Info”
  • Click on “Inspections”
  • Below the text “Schedule or Request an Inspection” the history of the inspection requests and results are available 

Finding the name of the assigned inspector on the morning of an inspection

  • The applicant and any contacts listed on the application will receive an email with the inspector’s name and phone number  between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. on the day of your inspection. 

After receiving the email on the inspection day, text your inspector the following:

  • Permit number
  • Type of inspection
  • Cell phone number of the person who will be walking the inspection site
  • Email address of the person who will be walking the inspection site
  • Method of video call you intend to use (Google Duo, FaceTime, or Microsoft Teams)

Your inspector will give you an approximate time window in which your inspection will take place. 

Virtual Inspections 

Many building and trade inspections can now be completed virtually.

Residential Inspections

New residential construction must adhere to all of the required inspections, including (but not limited to) building, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, demolition, and possible fire or elevator. Residential additions and alterations require some of these inspections.

Typically (minimum) required inspections for residential projects

Your project may require additional inspections not listed here. See All Residential Inspection options available in the Permit Arlington system.

Inspection Type  Permit Type  When 
Footing  Building  Before pouring concrete 
Groundwork  Plumbing  Before backgrading 
Slab  Building  Before pouring concrete 
Foundation Walls  Building  Before pouring concrete walls, or for reinforced Concrete Masonry Unit (CMU) walls 
Backfill  Building  After waterproofing or before backfilling 
Rough 

Electrical

Mechanical

Plumbing

Before covering work and 1st gas test (if applicable) 
Framing*  Building  After or on the same day as rough-in trades** 
Wall Bracing  Building  Prior to exterior house wrap or taping zip panels 
Insulation  Building  After insulating (allows close-in) 
Gas Pressure Test  Plumbing  Before concealing gas piping 
Final 

Electrical

Mechanical

Plumbing

After work is complete 
Final  Building  After or on the same day as final trades, before Certificate of Occupancy 
Certificate of Occupancy (CO)  CO After finals; apply for CO at least 2 weeks prior to occupancy 

*Rough-in and framing can be scheduled the same day. All rough-in must pass, or framing will automatically fail. 

**If a wall check is required by the Zoning Division, Zoning must approve the wall check prior to the framing inspection. Submit the wall check on the building permit through the amendment option in Permit Arlington

Typically (minimum) required inspections for residential deck

Inspection Type  Permit Type  When 
Footing  Building  Footing holes are inspected prior to concrete placement. At the time of the footing inspection, you must have the ledger board attached to the existing house.  
Framing*  Building  Joists, beams, connections, and mechanical attachments are inspected prior to placement of decking. In this inspection, lag screws, thru bolts, and expansion anchors at the ledger board are inspected and turned to insure proper installation and tightening. Access to the the inside of the house may be required.  
Final  Building  All remaining items are inspected. 

*Rough-in and framing can be scheduled the same day. All rough-in must pass, or framing will automatically fail. 

Commercial Inspections

See the Pre-Construction Manual for guidance about commercial projects.

Disclaimer: This is not a complete list of required commercial inspections.

After-Hours Inspections

You may request an inspection outside of our normal business hours (Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m, offices close early on the third Thursday of each month, at 12 p.m.).

Complete a Request for After-Hours Inspection Application and submit it by email to: AfterHourInspection@arlingtonva.us

After-hours inspections must be scheduled at least one week in advance of the intended inspection date. An overtime fee will be charged. The owner or the owner’s authorized agent must be present during the entire inspection.

Other Inspections