For Your Information: Chicago Department of Buildings Requiring 50% Fee With All Permit Applications

Beginning today, January 3, 2012, The Department of Buildings will start requiring a 50 percent deposit on all permit applications.
According to a news release, “The deposit requirement is designed to recoup a portion of the cost the department incurs for reviewing and approving plans that are never completely permitted and also to discourage design and building professionals from submitting plans for projects that may not yet have financing.”
Previously, permit fees were not assessed until the end of the process when the applicant picks up the permits, with the exception of those processed via Developer Services, where a comparable deposit has been required for some time. According to the City, “Hundreds of permits are reviewed and approved each year for which applicants do not pay or complete the process.”
Michael Merchant, Commissioner for the Department of Buildings, says that reviewing plans that never complete the permit process has forced “other projects to wait longer for their permit times,” and by charging a deposit, the department will be able to “capture part of the fees owed to [it] without overly burdening submittals at the start of the process and allow other projects to move along quicker.”
The City provides a Building Permit Fee Calculator on their website, located here.