Apply for Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCO)

Application for TCO

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TCO Application

A TCO is typically valid for up to 60 days. At the end of the TCO term an inspection will be required, before a new TCO can be applied for. Each TCO requires separate fees. If the project has not received final approval and a new TCO has not been issued at the end of the TCO term, the utilities to the building may be disconnected.

How to obtain a TCO:

  1. Fill out the TCO application with Utility Disconnect Letter (this applies even if building has permanent utilities) and send via email to InspectionInfo@oaklandca.gov or if unable to send an email hand deliver to building inspector at job site.
  2. Permit Inspection Senior Staff will review the request and communicate with Building Inspector
  3. If TCO application can be processed, permit inspection Senior staff will forward TCO application to PBD cashier who will then contact you for payment. If unable to process TCO application, contact will be made. Note: Impact Fees may be applicable
  4. Once TCO payment has been made, please obtain all signatures from all applicable parties (DOT, PWA, FIRE, all trade inspectors, and other non-City of Oakland or Port of Oakland agencies)
  5. Once all signatures from all applicable parties with any specific conditions are obtained, please contact your primary building inspector for their signature and specific conditions. Upon Building Inspector signature TCO takes effect, not when fees are paid.

The Vacate date shall be 60 days from when Building Inspector signs TCO and not when fees are paid or requested TCO vacate date from applicant.


Site Requirements for a TCO:

All life safety items for the building or portion of a building must be functional including:

  • Fire sprinklers and Alarms
  • Required means of egress including exit signage
  • Fire rated construction elements: walls, floors, corridors, stairs, shafts, etc.
  • Temporary elements may be required, stairs, separation walls, etc.
  • Minimum Accessibility as required by Chapter 11 of the building code
  • Areas where work is still taking place must be effectively separated from areas being occupied or open to the public, including parking areas or outdoor spaces.
  • All dwelling units must meet minimum habitability requirements, heat, light and ventilation etc.

The TCO application requires approval from all applicable departments, the applicable departments will vary from one building or portion to another, but may include:

  • Planning
  • Building
  • Engineering Services
  • Plumbing
  • Mechanical
  • Electrical
  • Fire Prevention
  • Public Works
  • Department of Transportation
  • Health Department


Directory for Permit Inspectors: https://www.oaklandca.gov/teams/building-inspectors-directory

Note that all permit inspectors are able to sign electronically.

Coordination with PG&E is essential, typically electrical connection must have made prior to a TCO being issued. City policy is to NOT release both Gas and Electric meters until the project is virtually complete.