Starting a Business

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To open a business in the City of Katy, please be aware that a Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) is required prior to occupying or doing business in any building or lease space. We recommend that you schedule a preliminary walk-through inspection, at no charge, to determine building and fire code compliance – before lease agreements are signed.

A certificate is required when (1) opening a new business, (2) upon change of business name or ownership for an existing business, (3) or upon relocation or expansion of an existing business. Food establishments must have approved plans from Harris County Health Department before City inspectors can review the plans. The certificate of occupancy will be issued when the following items (if applicable) have been met. 

Certificate of Occupancy Checklist:

  1. Complete the Certificate of Occupancy Application and bring it to the Utility Billing Office at City Hall, 901 Avenue C. The building or structure cannot be occupied prior to the Certificate of Occupancy being issued.
  2. The Planning Department will review the application to ensure that all information is complete and that the zoning district is appropriate for the type of business. NOTE: a Certificate of Occupancy will not be issued if a tax ID is not provided.
  3. After approval from Planning, and if no construction is to be done, the applicant will be called and a building inspection appointment will be scheduled. Inspectors will determine if any permits are required. If construction is to be done at a later date (i.e., structural, electrical, plumbing, hvac), permits may be required.
  4. If construction is planned before the business opens, an initial inspection can be scheduled to determine if there are any violations and if permits will be required. During the inspection process, inspectors and the Fire Marshall will ensure that all electrical, plumbing and mechanical equipment is in safe condition, as well as the means of egress requirements and fire safety and occupancy codes are met. Electricity is required to do the initial C of O walk through.
  5. If water is needed for clean up or build out purposes, applicants may request a 30-day temporary service from the Permits/Inspections Department and upon approval, a deposit will be collected at the Utility Billing Office (281-391-4801).
  6. If the property requires water, and temporary water service has not already been given, the business owner will need to contact Utility Billing (281-391-4801) to set up the water account and pay a deposit. The amount is based on meter size.
  7. When all inspections are approved, the applicant must call Permits and schedule a final inspection before the C of O is issued. Once the C of O is issued, the applicant may move in and open for business.

This checklist is provided to give an overview of the process, and is not all inclusive. Please keep these requirements in mind when making changes to your business or leasing your space. If you have any questions regarding this process, please contact us at 281.391.4801.

To download a Certificate of Occupancy application, please click on the link below or you may come by City Hall, located at 901 Avenue C to pick up the application.

Certificate of Occupancy Application

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