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Codes, Standards, and Guidelines

What Needs Zoning Review?

Generally, anything built in Unincorporated Cobb County needs a building permit. The Zoning Division needs to approve all sheds, carports, shops, gazebos, arbors, pergolas, porches, decks (covered and uncovered), sunrooms, greenhouses, attached and detached garages, house additions, building additions, interior renovations, basement finishes, pools (in-ground and above ground), pool houses, storage buildings, playhouses, barns, riding arenas, retaining walls, basketball courts, and tennis courts.

The above list shall include any pre-assembled, pre-constructed and/or movable items. Please call the Zoning Division at (770) 528-2035 for any questions relating to whether or not a building permit is required.

  • For residential permitting, call (770) 528-2060
  • For commercial permitting, call (770) 528-2071

To obtain a building permit in most cases, the building permit applicant needs to bring a scaled site plan drawn by a Georgia Registered Land Surveyor, Engineer, or Architect. There is nominal cost and delay when obtaining a building permit. Most building permits can be obtained during normal business hours the same day.

Benefits of Having a Building Permit

There are many benefits to obtaining a building permit:

  1. County building inspectors check the construction activity to make sure all applicable building codes are being followed;
  2. Creates a paper trail in case your insurance company, your financial institution or a potential buyer needs documentation of the construction activity;
  3. Ensures zoning requirements are met, so the construction activity is not delayed or halted, ordered to be moved, or even ordered to be demolished; and most importantly;
  4. Gives the property owner “Peace of Mind” that everything is done correctly and safely.
Cobb County Development Standards
Development Standards

Since the early 1970s, the original and amended Standards for Residential and Commercial Development have undergone revisions by individual agencies/departments/divisions. At this time, these standards are revised to comply with federal, state, regional, and local criteria.

County Code Books
Cobb County Code of Ordinances

View the Cobb County Code of Ordinances


Listed below are the code editions in effect as of January 1, 2021:

For information and questions regarding the Life Safety Code (NFPA 101), IFC Georgia Amendments or the Georgia Accessibility Code please contact the State Fire Marshal's Office.

The Act requires local governments that elect to enforce these codes within their jurisdictions to adopt administrative procedures and penalties in order to locally enforce any of these mandatory codes. Also, any applicable appendices of these codes must be adopted locally in order to be enforceable within a specific local jurisdiction.

The Act also made the following optional codes available for local government adoption and enforcement. Local governments choosing to enforce any of the below optional codes must adopt the code(s) they wish to enforce, as well as administrative procedures and penalties.

Click here to view the Georgia Amendments.

The DCA Board specifically omitted the plumbing, electrical, and energy requirements of the International Residential Code for One- and Two-Family Dwellings. Therefore, the plumbing requirements of the International Plumbing Code, the electrical requirements of the National Electrical Code, and the energy requirements of the International Energy Conservation Code must be used for one- and two-family dwelling construction.
If you need assistance in establishing or updating construction codes enforcement program in your area, please contact DCA’s Construction Codes Program at (404) 679-3118 or

View the official information sheet from Georgia Department of Community Affairs