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How to use PermitDocs

May 6, 2020 8:02:59 AM

Access to information is crucial to the success of your business. And it’s not always easy to find information, especially in land development. PermitDocs was developed to solve that problem, and give you access to the information you need, when you need it. 

But starting with a new tool isn't always easy, and many features and functionalities are often untouched. When it comes to making the most out of PermitDocs, we have a few different resources for you. This blog will cover the important features within the solution, and you can also watch our webinar from PermitDocs CEO and Co-Founder on how to optimize your membership. Watch our webinar 

At one point or another, we’ve all “misplaced” an important document somewhere on your computer, and spent way too much time searching for it. With so many different ways to store and retrieve information, a company can find itself with assets split between on-premise and cloud business environments, disjointed.

This makes finding what you need harder, especially in a time crunch - and when you know it’s there somewhere, there’s nothing more frustrating than opening file after file to find what you’re looking for, visiting city hall and sending countless emails. 

Property information tools offer a solution to this problem and make keeping track of your data easier. As your team grows and work patterns shift, keeping a system of data collection and storage will become increasingly important. You need processes that will scale with you, not deter you from succeeding. 

Streamline your code and regulation search process

Permitdocs was designed to provide a single location to conduct all property and zoning research. By delivering the property information and zoning codes you search with an algorithm solution, there’s no time or energy sprint on your end trying to find the data, so you have more uptime and resources to do what you need. 

Permitdocs saves and organizes research as a project and lets users collaborate with teams and other professionals. With this tool for your land information research, you can share, communicate and collaborate over this land information so that your team can communicate in real-time, reduce risk while planning and building, and feel confident that you’re making well-informed decisions with reliable information. 

When getting started with PermitDocs, you can pick two different options to perform a search: 

1. Search property information

To look up data on your property, type in the property address or Parcel ID into the search bar. This will return existing property information, assessor information, community plans, zoning designations, FARs, setbacks, height limits and more.

Searching for property information can give you the niche building and zoning information relevant to that piece of land, and you can then save that information to groups and projects, as we’ll cover later. 

2. Perform a code and regulation search 

Performing a code and regulation search will pull up the municipal code relevant to your property. To get this information, simply enter the keywords you’re searching for and the PermitDocs search engine will pull up the information. The database is updated bi-weekly, so don’t worry about using out-of-date code. If you’re searching for code in your municipality about restaurants on the second floor of a building, simply enter “second-floor restaurants.”

When using PermitDocs, use these features to enhance your user experience, get the most out of your tool and maximize PermitDocs’ utility:


This feature allows you to organize properties and collections of codes into groups. If you invite others into your new project, you can share your findings and collaborate in real-time. When viewing your data, PermitDocs lets you consolidate all of your data into one comprehensive report. You can then share these projects with team members, and also share the code within one project to another. This makes your life easier because you don’t have to search for the same code 12 times a week -- you just have to search once and then they’re saved forever. 


A group contains one property and selected code collections, and you can add as many groups to a project as needed. These are the “core” of your projects and keep information organized by location. Use groups for each individual land site you’re working with, and then attach all relevant information for that site. 

Share project 

Invite others to view, collaborate and comment on your projects. All you have to do is input their name and email, and PermitDocs sends them login instructions. Everyone collaborating on a project can view the saved groups, so you don’t need to worry about user access. 

Map options 

View the property from a parcel map, a topology map, a satellite view or map view and select nearby parcels to view their APN and address for further searches. This allows you to understand the limitations and context of the site before you get there, and can prevent unwanted surprises down the road. It also makes pre-planning easier for your work crew and staff before actually getting to the worksite, so you can optimize your time. 

Property summary 

This includes all of the search results like legal description, year build, owner information, square footage and number of rooms. Your property summary tool is helpful because you can get an overview of the property, its limitations and potential, the relevant zoning and building code information, and its municipality. All in one easy-to-access place, this reduces the need for paperwork and makes your job easier. 

Zoning summary 

This tool lets you view information about zoning designation, height limits and setbacks to the property or parcel of land. Zoning is a necessary (yet time-consuming) process, and the zoning summary will bring all of the most relevant information to your eyes. This way, you’re getting a comprehensive view of the data and you can make actionable decisions based on real-time information. 

Property notes 

Use this to add details to your search results and information, so others can respond. This is a good place to flag certain details, ask your coworkers questions, or even jot down your own thoughts about a property. The property notes tool is right where you need it, and everyone can see it at once. That way, it’s not forgotten or lost in a sea of information and paperwork. 

Save to project

This adds your current property search and information to a singular project, share them with clients and team members, and communicate easier with resources in one easy-to-locate area. No more searching for the same code 12 times each week -- you can now attach information to projects so it’s always just a click away. 

Watch our webinar 

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