Certificate of Occupancy

Program Overview 

A Certificate of Occupancy permit is required for all new businesses that are not applying for a building permit prior to occupancy (no construction or changes).  See below for other instances when a certificate of occupancy is required.

This program allows business owners and business tenants the opportunity to learn what is required to occupy their space in a way that provides a safe work environment and meets the rules and guidelines of the City and the Minnesota State Building and Fire Codes. It is specifically designed to try to avoid business location decisions that end up not working because of code related occupancy or use issues.

  1. Step 1 - Review and Prepare
  2. Step 2 - Create an Account/PRO
  3. Step 3 - Apply
  4. Step 4 - Review and Payment
  5. Step 5 - Schedule an Inspection

Certificate of Occupancy General Information

A certificate of occupancy is required in the City of Blaine per MN Building Code Section 1300.0220 and the City of Blaine Code of Ordinances -  No building or structure shall be used or occupied, and no change in the existing occupancy classification of a building, structure, or portion of a building or structure shall be made until the building official has issued a certificate of occupancy.

In addition, a certificate of occupancy is required for any structure that is erected or moved, any portion of any existing industrial or commercial structure that is significantly structurally altered or remodeled, and any existing industrial or commercial structure changes occupancy classification or is occupied by a new tenant or owner.

Important Note:  Where an entire building undergoes a change of occupancy, Sections 305.4.1 and 305.4.2 of the MN Accessibility Code apply.  A key requirement is that not fewer than one family accessible toilet room, or one accessible male and one accessible female toilet room would be required to comply with current construction standards.

Important Note:  

Review and Prepare

The following action(s) need to be completed prior to permit approval.
  • SAC Determination Form
    This is to be turned into the Metropolitan Council 651-602-1421 (Required prior to issuance of permit).

General Information

  • Prior to permit approval, staff will review your permit information.  This typically takes 3 to 4 business days.  Upon approval you will receive an email that your application has been approved and the permit is ready for payment.
  • Upon permit approval (after payment), contact the Building Department to schedule a certificate of occupancy walk-through inspection using the inspections tile on your online permit. An inspection will be scheduled with the new business, a building inspector, and a fire inspector.
  • The program will help eliminate future hardships by ensuring that tenants are aware of City or State regulations prior to relocating to a site.
  • The program will allow the City to obtain emergency key holder information which will assist businesses in the event of a fire or emergency.
  • The program will assist the City in identifying the hazardous materials in our community, thus protecting volunteer fire crews. Repairs, improvements, or concerns will be given in a written form to the prospective business and building owner.