Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.

dob

Department of Buildings

In observance of the Emancipation Day holiday, DOB will be closed on Tuesday, April 16, 2024; no construction will be allowed on this day without an after-hours permit. You may report illegal construction by submitting an Illegal Construction Inspection Request Form during normal business hours or by calling 311.

DOB
Menu Button
 

Welcome to the Department of Buildings

1 I Need To...
keyboard_arrow_right
2 ...
keyboard_arrow_right
3  

Surveyors FAQs

Special Online Instructions

Does the Office of the Surveyor have information on the DOB website?
Yes. Go to dob.dc.gov, type in Surveyor’s Office in the Search field and select the link at the top.

The DOB Cashier’s Office is closed. How do I pay for a receipt?
You may now pay your receipt Online. Please follow the steps included below the FAQ’s under the title “Online Payment of Fees”. If you cannot submit payment through our Online system please contact us at (Contact the DC Surveyor).

Does the Office of the Surveyor’s Website have plats I can view or print?
Yes. Within the Office of the Surveyor’s Webpage is a link to a research platform known as “SurDocs” (Abbreviation for Survey Documents). Within this interface, you can search for records pertaining to your property if you know what your lot and square is.

Can I pay for services offered by the Surveyor’s Office Online?
Yes. Please visit the DOB website and go to the ACA Customer Portal and search for our services under the Building section. You may also try searching for your invoice number and paying within the ACA Portal using the instructions below:

What is a Lot?
By definition, a Lot is the land bounded by definite lines that, when occupied to be occupied by a building structure and accessory buildings, includes the open spaces required under DCMR Title 12. A Lot may or may not be the land as recorded in the records of the Office of the Surveyor.

What is a Record Lot?
A Record Lot is a lot recorded on a plat of a subdivision in the Office of the Surveyor of the District of Columbia. The plat is also reviewed by zoning, historic preservation and the Office of Tax and Revenue.

What is a Tax Lot?
A Tax Lot is a lot created by the Office of Tax and Revenue for tax billing purposes. This lot is for assessment tax purposes only; it does not affect or change record lots.

What are Square & Lot Numbers?
The city is divided into sections and assigned a Square number. For example -  downtown, each city block has a separate Square number. The individual properties within the Square are each assigned a Lot number.

How do you find your Square & Lot Numbers?
The Square & Lot numbers can be found in your deed. The Office of Tax and Revenue can obtain your Square & Lot Number using your address. You can also find this online at mytax.dc.gov.

What is a Building Plat?
A Building Plat is a scaled drawing of a lot, showing lot lines and record dimensions. The plat is certified by the DC Surveyor and is usually used to obtain a building permit. The drawing provided is a depiction of the lot only. Features related to acquiring a building permit will need to be added by a design professional or skilled consumer.

Where do I Obtain a Building Plat and How Much Does It Cost?
To obtain a Building Plat you must place the order online (Online Building Plats). The only information you will need to place the order is the square and lot number for each property. The cost of a plat is: $60.50 – sent via email within 3-5 business days; and $88.00 – Expedited - sent via email by 2 pm (EST) the next business day*.

*Note: Expedited orders must be placed and paid for by no later than 3 pm (EST) the day prior to pick up. Any orders after that time will take an additional day to process and complete.
Also, detailed steps for ordering Building Plats Online are included below the FAQ’s under the title “Online Building Plat Ordering”.

What is a Plat for Permit?
A Plat for Permit is a Building Plat that has been prepared for submission for a Building Permit. This document will have the lot depicted by the Office of the Surveyor on the official Building Plat and will also contain the necessary design features added by the design professional or customer.

Note: All added content must be to scale.

What is the Approved Plat for Permit?
The Approved Plat for Permit is the Plat for Permit that has been reviewed by DOB's Permitting Division and Approved with the Building Permit. This document will have agency certifications on it and will also reference the Building Permit Number.

What is a Subdivision Plat?
Record Lots are created in the Office of the Surveyor by recording a Subdivision Plat if you want to change the configuration of a lot or lots. For example, if you own multiple lots and want to combine them into one lot, or if you own one large lot and want to subdivide it into several smaller lots. You also may need to convert your tax lot to a record lot for permit purposes. You would order a Subdivision and have it recorded in our office.

How can I apply for a Subdivision of land (or conversion of a Tax Lot to a lot(s) of Record)?
We have a newly developed Online process for applying for a Subdivision. Please follow the steps included below the FAQ’s under the title “Application for Subdivision”.

I have a Condominium project. How can I submit the Plat and Plans for review?
We have a newly developed Online process for submitting Condominium Plat and Plans. Please follow the steps included below the FAQ’s under the title “Condominium Plat and Plans Submissions”.

What is a Wall Check?
A wall check is a survey done to locate new construction. Once you obtain a building permit and start constructing, a DOB Building Inspector may require you to have a wall check to locate exactly where your new construction is on the lot. This is done to make sure your construction meets setback requirements, lot coverage restrictions, and to assure no encroachments exist. To learn more about DOB's Wall Check process, please visit our Wall Check page.

Do you have Surveys of my property showing the location of my house?
Possibly. Within the Office of the Surveyor’s Webpage is a link to a research platform known as “SurDocs” (Abbreviation for Survey Documents). Within this interface you can search for records pertaining to your property if you know what your lot and square is. The Office of the Surveyor does not record or keep any private surveys in its inventory such as Location Drawings or ALTA/NSPS surveys associated with transfers of title.

Note: To access the Office of the Surveyor’s Webpage go to DOB's homepage, navigate the service selector on the main page to select Surveyor Services.

Do you have interior plans or plans used for the construction of my house?
No. The Office of the Surveyor only has land plats. The Office of Records Management would have plans for your house.

Can the Office of the Surveyor come out to locate my property lines?
No. The Office of the Surveyor does not do field surveys. You will need to hire a licensed survey company to perform a survey. We can provide you with a list of licensed survey companies who are registered with our office that you can use. Work done by a Registered DC Surveyor can be filed in the Office of the Surveyor where copies are available to the public.

What is a Site Per Sub Plat?
A Site Per Sub Plat (Site Per Subdivision) is a Building Plat that reflects what the lot(s) of a proposed subdivision will look like once the subdivision is recorded. It would not have a lot number included on the document and it is the same cost as any other building plats. These cannot be ordered expedited.

What is an Approved Plat for Permit?
It is an Official DC Building Plat with the site features (existing and proposed) included that is reviewed and approved by the DOB permitting department.

Who should I contact if I have additional questions?
Contact the DC Surveyor; they will be happy to assist you.