Before You Start a Commercial Building Project

While constructing a building can be a very exciting process, it’s important to dot your i’s and cross your t’s before getting started to avoid unpleasant “surprises” during the construction phase.

In this post, we’ll share 4 pre-construction items you need to consider before you can begin constructing your building.


It’s important to say up front that every building project is unique. No two projects are exactly the same. However, on virtually every project there are some very important items you need to take care of during the pre-construction phase.

Here at Rockford Structures, we call this building process phase “Pre-construction Due Diligence”.  We include these items in our design and build process because if we don’t take care of these issues upfront, you can have your building process halted or stopped.


  1. DOES YOUR BUILDING SITE HAVE SETBACKS OR EASEMENTS? Before you submit your drawings for a building permit, make sure to look at building setbacks and ensure there are no easements on the property.
  2.  DID YOU SUBMIT DRAWINGS FOR BUILDING PERMITS? Everyone knows you have to have a set of drawings for constructing your building, but not everyone knows that you need to turn those drawings in to the local municipal authority and receive a building permit. A building permit grants legal permission to start the construction or alteration of a building in accordance with approved drawings and specifications. Permits basically ensure any building project meets the codes of your local area and prevents you from being subject to legal action.
  3.  DOES YOUR BUILDING FIT YOUR PROPERTY DESIGNATION? If your building or the planned use of your building doesn’t fit the property designation, you may have to go through a zoning process to get the building approved. Make sure your building fits the property designation or make sure you know how to work with your zoning department to get your building approved.
  4. DO YOU HAVE ALL THE PERMITS YOUR NEED TO GET STARTED? Be aware of the miscellaneous permits. In many areas, there are additional permits you need in place before starting construction. For example, additional permits can include a state EPA permit for stormwater pollution prevention. Sometimes the permitting processes can take at least 30 days to complete. So be prepared and aware of any additional permits you might need to keep your project moving forward


While the pre-construction process isn’t necessarily complicated, it does take time. In our opinion, it’s the most important part of the construction process because it sets the tone for the rest of the project. We know navigating this process can be confusing and overwhelming so we walk all of our clients through this process step-by-step.

Our entire process is designed to help you keep on track to meeting your building goals. We won’t move forward with any part of the construction process until the first things are taken care of. In other words, we won’t complete a full set of construction architectural drawings without knowing that we’re meeting the setbacks and we’re meeting the criteria of zoning. We take the necessary steps in a very methodical and strategic way so the entire construction process is as seamless and worry-free as can be.


At Rockford Structures, we’ve been guiding clients through the pre-construction and construction process for almost 50 years. Please ask for our free advice by scheduling a free consultation with one of our construction experts.