MISCELLANEOUS FAQ'S

Miscellaneous

Where can I find out if a property has a building permit?

Please visit pittsburghpa.buildingeye.com/building to see if a property has a building permit.

Do I need a Certificate of Occupancy to sell my property or buy a property?

The City of Pittsburgh does not require a Certificate of Occupancy at the time of sale, and PLI does not perform systematic Occupancy inspections similar to other municipalities around Pittsburgh.

However, that does not mean that a building is compliant with all Zoning, Building, and/or Maintenance Codes at the time of sale. If someone buys a property that has existing violations, that buyer may be held liable for those violations. In general, we suggest that people always check the Certificate of Occupancy and other property records prior to selling, buying, or leasing property.

If anyone has any legal questions about Certificates fo Occupancy, property records, and/or property transactions, they may consider contacting an attorney, but PLI cannot give legal counsel or advice.

How do I get a copy of a Certificate of Occupancy?

You can search for a Certificate of Occupancy by visting our Certificate of Occupancy Search Web page. If you cannot find a Certificate there, you can try submitting a Right to Know Request with the City's Open Records Officer ("ORO") in the City Law Department. The steps on how to submit a request are described below on this page.

Please note that not all properties in the City of Pittsburgh have a Certificate of Occupancy. 

I have a complaint that isn’t a building or zoning violation. What do I do?

Please call 311 and the correct department will follow-up with the complaint. Some common complaints that PLI does not handle include:

  • Unlicensed and unregistered vehicles in the public right of way – Police
  • Ice and snow on sidewalks – DPW
  • Boarding up City property - DPW
  • Plumbing violations – Allegheny County Health Department
  • Garbage cans being placed on the sidewalk too early – DPW: Environmental Services
  • City Trees – DPW: Forestry

I want information on violations and permits. Do I need to submit a Right to Know request?

If you are looking for information regarding code violations, please visit Building Eye at https://pittsburghpa.buildingeye.com/enforcement

Because some information is exempt from public disclosure, if you would like a copy of a notice of violation or a building permit, especially if you are requesting a large quantity of information or information that is historical in nature, please submit a Right to Know Request to the City's Open Records Officer ("ORO") in the City Law Department. The steps on how to submit a request are described at the bottom of this page.

Can I view building plans?

We do not release building plans unless permission is obtained from the current owner or original architect. If you are the current owner or original architect or have permission from the current owner or original architect, please submit a Right to Know Request, along with documentation/proof of ownership or permission/authority to view the plans, to the City's Open Records Officer ("ORO") in the City Law Department. The steps on how to submit a request are described below.

I want to submit a Right to Know request. Where do I go?

All Right to Know requests must be submitted through the City Law Department. For more information about what kinds of information can be released and about submitting Right to Know requests, please visit the City Law Department's Right to Know Policy Web page

All Right to Know requests for information must be submitted to the Open Records Officer ("ORO") of the City of Pittsburgh:

Celia Behrend Liss
Open Records Officer
313 City-County Building
414 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219 P: 412-255-2015
F: 412-255-2285
openrecords@pittsburgh.pa.gov