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You can apply for an action permit instead of a building permit if the construction project involves a small outbuilding or other minor structure. An action permit is also required for some repairs and modifications, such as select facade work and combining and splitting dwellings, as long as the project does not involve demolition or changes to load-bearing structures. Action permits are also required for the construction of a geothermal well or wastewater system.
Building regulations exempt certain projects from the need to apply for an action permit. Visit the "Construction projects instructions" page to check if your project requires a permit.
Apply for a permit before you begin your construction project. To ensure that your project goes smoothly, it is always a good idea to arrange for a preliminary negotiation on the project before submitting your permit application. Preliminary negotiations are requested by clicking on "Kysy neuvoa (Ask for advice)" in the Lupapiste online permit service. In the case of smaller construction projects, the preliminary negotiation can be used to ascertain whether a statement in terms of cityscape is sufficient in lieu of an action permit.
Construction project instructions
Permit fees and permit processing
Most building permits and statements are subject to a fee.
See all permit fees:
City of Helsinki Building Control Price List 2022 (In Finnish, pdf).
City of Helsinki Building Control Price List 2023 (In Finnish, pdf).
Applications receive notification of the decision approvals in the Lupapiste online permit service.
Permits decisions are officially visible for 14 days. During this period, it is possible to submit an appeal to the Environment and Permits Sub-committee of the Urban Environment Committee.
You can find a list of Building Control public notices in Finnish and Swedish only in the Julkipano (Public notices) section of the Lupapiste online permit service. No login is required to see this list.
Find permits decisions on the following pages:
- Agendas and minutes of the Environment and Permits Sub-committee of the Urban Environment Committee
- Permit decisions from the head of Building Control
- Decisions from Building Control officials
A list of public notices and decisions is also on display in the lobby of the Urban Environment House, located at street address Työpajankatu 8, Helsinki.
A permit is legally valid if no appeals or complaints have been submitted against the permit decision. An appeal decision made by the Environment and Permits Sub-committee can be appealed to the Helsinki Administrative Court. The appeal period is 14 or 30 days.
You may only start the construction work once the permit becomes legally valid. Projects that have been granted a building permit must begin within three (3) years and the construction work must be completed within five (5) years of the permit entering into force. In the case of action permit, demolition permit or landscape work permit, the work must be carried out within three (3) years.
Be sure to apply for an extension of your permit while it is still valid. If the permit has expired, you will have to reapply for the permit in order to receive an extension.
In Helsinki, all applications for building permits are submitted electronically in the Lupapiste online permit service. General and project-specific guidance and counselling are also primarily provided via Lupapiste. Documents related to the application and construction process monitoring are to be submitted in digital format to Lupapiste.
How to get started and ask for advice in Lupapiste
- The first time you use the service, you will be asked to register. After this, you will be able to log in with your e-mail address and password.
- Enter the street address where your project site is located.
- Use the “Kysy neuvoa (Ask for advice)” button in the upper right-hand corner to request guidance.
- Write a short description of your project and your question(s). The service will direct you to the appropriate expert who can answer your question(s).
After the consultation, you can turn your request for guidance into a permit application.
The Lupapiste user manual (available in Finnish and Swedish only) offers instructions for registering and logging in to the service, submitting a new application or request for guidance, turning your guidance request into a permit application, and submitting an application.
You can also submit a guidance request form to receive technical support for using Lupapiste.