How to Do a Change of Use When Leasing Commercial Space

change of use in Austin TexasWhen buying or leasing commercial real estate you sometimes will come across a commercial property that was previously used as something different than your intended use.

For example say you find an industrial space for rent Austin that was previously used by a wine distributor. According to the City of Austin zoning chart their use was considered Limited Warehousing and Distribution. Your a food and beverage company that wants to use this industrial space for food preparation. Before you will be able to open for business you will have to apply and be approved for Light Manufacturing which would take about 15 to 20 days.

Change of Use Process

The change of use process will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. In most counties and cities you will have to visit your city planning department or development assistant center. Anytime there is a proposed change in the use of a space or building you must obtain a permit. The change of use permit is required because they want to make sure you comply with the applicable codes for a new use before issuing a certificate of occupancy.

Change of Use in Austin Texas

In Austin, Tx however a change of use is a two step process.

1. First you need a site plan exemption application or a site plan correction application if they have a current site plan on file for the property. Either application must be submitted to the Austin Tx Development Assistance Center located at One Texas Center, 505 Barton Springs Road, Austin, Tx 78704. They are open from Monday to Friday 9 am to 12 pm. The review time is 7-10 days.

2. Next you need to submit a building permit application with Commercial Plan Review which is located at the same address on the 2nd floor Monday – Friday, 8:00 to 12 pm. Once you have approval of the building permit you will be issued a Certificate of Occupancy and you can open for business.

If you have any questions about whether you are required to do a change of use on your commercial space in Austin or how to do it feel free to give us a call to discuss at 512-861-0525

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