Community Development


Functions and Responsibilities

The Building Division of Community Development oversees building and related construction activities to protect the public health, safety and welfare of our residents and visitors pursuant to the construction codes. Chelan County enforces the International Codes, Washington State Amendments and Washington Administrative Code (WAC), all as adopted in CCC Chapter 3.04. A free online version of the International Codes is available by visiting the ICC website (Here) and hard copy of the code books can be purchased by visiting the ICC Bookstore or WABO Bookstore. Both of these versions of the Code do not include any amendments specific to Washington State. To check Washington State amendments to building codes please visit the Washington State Building Code Council website.

The Building Division is responsible for the administration and enforcement of the following programs and activities: International Building, Residential, Mechanical, Fire and the Uniform Plumbing Codes, Washington State Energy Code; Chelan County Code; FEMA flood protection requirements & Floodplain Development Permits; Accessibility & Washington State Barrier Free Design requirements and other Washington State and Federal laws. Activities include permit application intakes, public assistance on permit process, plan reviews, permit issuance, and inspections during construction.

Commonly requested information:

Information for other common questions:

  • For how to determine snow loads and other design criteria, click HERE
  • Manufactured home building permit submittal information can be found by clicking HERE 
  • (other "land use" information may be required to complete your application)
  • Information about "yurts" can be found by clicking HERE
  • 2015 International pool and spa code, with local requirements HERE
  • For information about Lead-Arsenate soil contamination remediation pilot project findings, see this presentation.


Fire Prevention and Investigations Department (Fire Marshal)

Fire Prevention and Investigation develops and manages a countywide fire and life safety inspection program in commercial businesses in the unincorporated portions of Chelan County. Coordinates with the Fire Districts and conducts fire investigations in the unincorporated areas of Chelan County, providing comments on proposed development and plan review of new commercial occupancies for Fire Code compliance. Participates in the development and updates of County Wildfire Protection Plans and Wildland Urban Interface codes.  (The department is its own separate county agency but is physically co-located within the Community Development Department's office.)

Documents & Forms


WA State energy code compliance forms & links:

Residential forms:

Commercial forms:

NOTE: You must create an account and login to access the Excel compliance forms.


Floodplain regulations & forms:



All inspections with the Chelan County must be scheduled 24 hours in advance. All requests must be made by 4pm each day of the week. Inspections called in after 4pm on Fridays, or over the weekend will not be scheduled until Tuesday’s inspections.

Inspections can be scheduled as follows:

By phone by calling 509-667-6635 and providing the following information:

  • Permit Number
  • Address
  • Type of Inspection
  • Date to perform the inspection
  • Contact name and phone number in case we need to call you back



Building Official Luis Gonalez

Breanne Hensley
Plans Examiner 
Phone: 509-667-6279

Aaron Fahey
Plans Examiner 
Phone: 509-667-6295


Building Division Frequently Asked Questions

The WA State Residential Code exempts small accessory structures, such as tool sheds and playhouses that are 288 square feet or less and limited to one-story.  The accessory structure would still have to comply with the required zoning setbacks.

Small dwelling units less than 1500 square feet require 3 energy credits, medium size dwelling units require 6 energy credits, and large dwelling units exceeding 5000 square feet require 7 energy credits.

There are 7 categories to choose from and you can only choose one option from each category.

You can call the county and we can calculate your snow load for you but you will need your parcel number when you call.

The county will always provide you with the ground snow load and that will be accurately converted to the roof snow load by your design professional or truss manufacturer.

Yes, a permit is required from the county and the manufactured or mobile home must be a certified HUD home or approved by WA State Department of Labor and Industries.  The county issues the permit for the foundation system/setup only.

True Park Model RV’s are certified to the ANSI A119.5 Standard and are regulated by WA State Department of Labor & Industries as Factory-Assembled Structures.  They can be used as permanent dwellings as long as the unit contains a WA State Insignia approved by State L&I and the unit is placed on a permanent foundation with approved utilities.

Yes, Yurts are allowed to be used as permanent dwelling units as long as the structure is placed on a permanent foundation, is not used for camping or recreational uses, and meets the current building code requirements for structural, life-safety, and energy efficiency.

Yes, Tiny Houses are regulated by the WA State Residential Code, Appendix Q and are allowed to be built onsite as permanent dwellings.  Tiny Houses on wheels that are constructed offsite must be approved by WA State L&I as Factory-Assembled Structures.

A fence can be used as the barrier requirement and the gate access must also be controlled.  In lieu of a fence, an automatic pool cover complying with ASTM F1346 may be installed.  If the dwelling is used as part of the pool barrier then there are requirements for doors and windows that access the pool area as well.

No, per RCW 18.08.410, a residential building up to and including four dwelling units is exempt from having to have the structure professionally designed.  However, elements of the structure that exceed the prescriptive requirements of the code may require engineered design, such as where ground snow loads exceed 70 pounds per square feet.

No, these structures are not regulated by the WA State Residential Code so no “building” permit is required.  However, there is a siting permit required to verify setbacks from critical areas, and property lines.

A structure that required a building permit and was constructed without the proper permit was illegally constructed.  Obtaining the permit after the structure has been completed does not deem the structure to be legal in the eyes of the code.

Permit applications are valid for 6 months and the application period can be extended an additional 6 months as long as the customer pursues their permit in good faith.  If not pursued in good faith, the application expires and is cancelled.  Once the permit has been issued it is valid for 2-years to complete the required work.

No.  Accessory structures regulated by the WA State Residential Code are garages, carports, shops, and similar structures and cannot contain habitable or living space elements or they would be deemed dwelling units.  Accessory structures can contain a bathroom since this element is not considered habitable space by the building code.

Posted: 01/29/2015 09:32 AM
Last Updated: 08/17/2023 06:42 AM

Share This Page...

Community Development Calendar

Upcoming events and schedules at the county!

  • 20
    Dec 2023
    01:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Cancelled Hearing Examiner - December 20, 2023

    Posted by: Community Development

    By Zoom Video Conference
  • 24
    Jan 2024
    06:00 PM - 08:00 PM

    Planning Commission - January 24, 2024

    Posted by: Community Development

    400 Douglas Street
  • 28
    Feb 2024
    06:00 PM - 08:00 PM

    Planning Commission - February 28, 2024

    Posted by: Community Development

    400 Douglas Street
  • 27
    Mar 2024
    06:00 PM - 08:00 PM

    Planning Commission - March 27, 2024

    Posted by: Community Development

    400 Douglas Street
  • 24
    Apr 2024
    07:00 PM - 08:00 PM

    Planning Commission - April 24th, 2024

    Posted by: Community Development

    400 Douglas Street