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The City of West Fargo’s building code requires building permits to be obtained before doing certain types of construction for all existing structures and all new residential and commercial construction and remodeling. Building permits allow the city to review all construction projects and ensure that meet the minimum requirements of the West Fargo building code and zoning requirements. A building permit also establishes a record of the construction and remodeling history of your property. Once the permits have been issued the building department will conduct onsite inspections to help ensure compliance the building code.
The building permit application is available on the buildings website.
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City standards for service can be viewed under the Sewer and Water Services city ordinances (Chapter 9).
To officially request services you can use the standard Request for Improvements form as a guideline. Residents can submit their request for improvement to the City Administrator.
For questions regarding the ordinances or submitting a request, please contact the City Administrator.
Legally, the City of West Fargo has no jurisdiction in rear-yard drainage issues. Only certain catch basins within City easements can be addressed. If there is a problem at a catch basin, contact the Public Works department. For other drainage issues, such as excess fill or other blockages, the first course of action is to contact your neighbors.
The City Engineer can help mediate in backyard drainage problems, such as providing recommendations to help rectify or improve the situation, but cannot make enforceable decisions.
The City of West Fargo employs Moore Engineering, Inc. to plan and provide engineering services for the city.
For more information, visit the Engineer website.
The Renaissance Zone program is a tool to help cities revitalize their communities. By offering both state and local tax incentives for five years, both residents and business owners are provided with an incentive to invest in the community. This program is unique in that cities develop handcrafted development plans that address each city's specific goals.
For more information about the Renaissance Zone program in the City of West Fargo, visit the Economic Development website.
An appraisal is an estimate of the price that most people would likely pay for your house in its present condition. The average appraisal will take 15 to 20 minutes and will involve an outdoor and indoor inspection. Your annual property tax is based on this estimate of value.
The Assessor places a value, or appraises, all property in the city. These valuations determine the distribution of the property tax burden, not the total amount of taxes paid in the city. The determining factor of whether your taxes will increase or decrease is how the current assessed valuation relates to today's market value. The city conducts periodic reappraisals to assure that changes affecting market value are reflected in your assessed value. Any changes that occur from this reappraisal will not take affect until the tax bill you receive the following December.
To find your appraisal, visit the Assessor's Property Information Search site. You can find additional information on the Assessor's site.
Permits are required for additions, decks, porches, finishing basements, replacing doors & windows of different sizes, interior renovations or repair that include structural modifications, demolition work, accessory structures, swimming pools and re-siding. All HVAC systems require permits, including all gas appliances & equipment, wood stoves, etc. A building permit and/or a zoning permit may be required when a building use is changed.
Separate plumbing and electrical systems permits are required for the installation, alteration, relocation, replacement, or addition to any wiring, piping, or equipment or appliances associated with those systems.
Electrical permits are issued and inspections are performed by the North Dakota State Electrical Board (701) 499-1549.
Plumbing permits are issued and inspections are performed by the North Dakota State Plumbing Board (701) 799-1555.
Permits are not required to paint a house (interior or exterior), hang wallpaper, replace cabinets and do similar finish work. Permits are also not required to build an accessory building having a floor area of 120 square feet or less, install concrete sidewalks and patios entirely on your property. Finally, permits are not required to insulate an existing building where no structural changes are made.
If you have questions about whether you need a permit for the project you have in mind or to see if it meets zoning requirements, contact the Building department.
You can apply online or in person at the Building Department office located at 800 Fourth Ave. E, Suite 1, West Fargo ND 58078.
Please contact the Planning Department with questions about a residential outdoor swimming pool at (701) 515-5370.
A majority of residential lots have a maximum of 30% total lot coverage for roofed structures, some lots can have up to 35% total lot coverage. You need to know the size of your lot, the square footage of your existing house and attached garage (footprint only) and any other detached structures. Please consult the Guideline for Building Accessory Use Structures for additional information.
Please contact the Building department and we can assist you in with this process if needed.
A building permit is required to install and replace all gas and electric heating and cooling appliances and equipment. Gas piping also requires a permit.
You can install and replace your own HVAC equipment. All equipment installed or replaced must adhere to the manufacturer’s installation requirements and listed uses. All gas appliances and piping requires will also require a building permit and inspection prior to normal use.
You can search you address on the FEMA Flood Map Service or you can contact the Building department and we will help you.
Yes, we have numerous information handouts and guidelines listed on website.
With your building permit, the Building department will provide information about when and who to call for inspection(s). Building inspectors will inspect your work several times during the course of construction for things such as footings, framing, insulation, rough-in and mechanical work and building final inspection.
You will need to contact the Building department to schedule an inspection; no work shall proceed or be covered until the requested inspection has been signed off. An inspection card may be attached to your permits. You or your contractor should post the card on the site until completion of the final inspection. This card contains important information about the job and is used to record inspections performed.
Contact the Building department to arrange your inspection.
Information requirements can vary depending upon your specific project. Handouts and checklists are available which describe the information required to submit an application.
Homeowners may prepare their own plans; however, the Building department may require a design professional or engineered plans to ensure building code compliance. Please allow adequate time for you or your representative to prepare the plans.
You can supply your own designs but those drawings need to be to scale and they must be neat and easily legible. No free-hand drawings will be accepted.
The Building department may require that a design professional or engineered plans may be necessary to ensure building code compliance.
Some permits, such as mechanical, re-siding, and re-roofing, can be issued at the time you apply, if time allows. Most other building permit applications may take up to four business days to process. However, it may take longer if the if the applications and building plans are not complete and accurate.
Applications for permits should be submitted well in advance of your scheduled starting date so that the Building department can help you through the process and issue your permit before you are ready to start work. This is especially true during the summer construction season.
There is a charge for permits:
For more information, contact the Building department.
The Building department provides various handouts on permit application procedures and requirements. This information is available on the City of West Fargo Website or at the West Fargo Building department office located at West Fargo City Hall (800 4th Avenue East Suite 1, West Fargo) between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.