Building Permits and Business Licenses

Welcome to the business license and permit main page. If you are doing work in the Town of Cheraw or thinking about opening a business, please check the FAQ below to help get you on the right track.  All documents related to permits may be found at the bottom of the page.Building Permit FAQ

Why do I need a building permit?

Building permits are designed to protect homeowners and building owners from improperly done work.  Safety and the protection of life is our primary goal when it comes to building codes enforcement.

Who may obtain a building permit?

Only contractors licensed by the State of South Carolina or homeowners who file a homeowner disclosure may apply for building permits.  If you are unsure if a contractor has the appropriate type of license, you may look it up at or you may call the Building and Codes Department at Town Hall, 843-537-7283. 

When do I need a building permit?

Building permits are required in the Town of Cheraw when any work  exceeds $500 (materials + labor) in value. This includes accessory buildings.  

Can any contractor work on any building?

No.  There are many types of contractor licenses; specialty contractors, residential builders, and general (commercial) contractors.  In general, only commercial contractors may work on commercial buildings.  Please contact the Building and Codes Department at 843-537-7283 if you are unsure about a contractor having the appropriate licensing.

Can I work on my own home?

Yes. South Carolina State Law allows homeowners to be their own contractor if they file a homeowner disclosure form with the Chesterfield County Register of Deeds and obtain a building permit from the Town of Cheraw. Work must still be done to code. After a disclosure is filed you will be unable to sell or rent your home for two years. State law requires a homeowner to file a disclosure anytime they plan to do more than $200 worth of work to a home. The disclosure form is available in the dropdown box below.

Do I need an architect or engineer to develop a set of plans?

A design professional (architect or engineer) will be required if you plan on changing the layout of a building or changing the occupancy of the building.  A life safety plan will be required at the minimum.

What do I need to obtain a building permit?

  1. A Complete Building Permit Application
  2. An authorization letter from the homeowner or a copy your contract.
  3. Contractor must have a Town of Cheraw Business License
  4. A Site or Plot Plan (for new construction, accessory buildings, and additions)
  5. Appropriate Zoning Approval (if required)
  6. Set of Plans (if required)
  7. Board of Architectural Review Approval (if project is located in the historic district)

Please consult with the Building and Codes Department at 843-537-7283 to learn if a set of plans or other approvals are required for a building permit.

We are here to help.  Proper permitting and licensing will help you avoid costly mistakes and help protect life and safety in the Town.  Please call the Building Department at 843-537-7283 if you ever have any questions. All related building permit documents may be found in the document center below. 

Business License FAQ

Cheraw Business License Download

Who needs a business license?

Anyone engaging in or planning to engage in business in the Town of Cheraw must obtain a business license.  This includes retail establishments, peddlers, contractors, etc.

What should I know prior to obtaining a business license?

Prior to purchasing or leasing any building or site you should contact the Town of Cheraw's Zoning Department at 843-537-7283 to make sure the property is properly zoned for its intended use. The Building Department can also help determine what kind of materials will be needed prior to the issuance of a business license.  Consulting with Town staff can help avoid costly mistakes.

What do I need to do to obtain a business license at a retail location?

At the minimum to obtain a business license you will need a

  1. Complete Business license application with detailed information on the type of business.
  2. A floor plan drawn to scale of the building and how each area will be used.
  3. Zoning Approval
  4. A full scope of work being done to the building (ex. painting, new floors, new drywall, plumbing, electrical work, etc.)

The Building and Codes Department will review your application and determine if more information is necessary.

May I have a business in my home?

Yes, if the proposed business meets certain requirements.  There are safeguards in place to prevent harm to neighboring property owners.  Please contact the Zoning Department at 843-537-7283 for more information.

May I operate a business in my backyard shed?

No, we do not allow businesses to operate out of accessory structures.

We want to help you get your business started! Incomplete or inaccurate information may delay the issuing of a business license.  Please contact the Town Clerk’s Office at 843-537-7283 for questions relating to business licenses.

Doc app

Document Center

The Document Center provides easy access to public documents. Click on one of the categories below to see related documents or use the search function.

Categories always sorted by seq (sub-categories sorted within each category)
Documents sorted by HEADER in Ascending Order within category

Building Permit Documents16 documents

  • Authorization Letter
    document Header Authorization Letter
    A signed authorization letter is required when a contractor is doing work on behalf of a property owner
  • Board of Architectural Review Application
    document Header Board of Architectural Review Application
    A certificate of appropriateness is required before working in the historic district.
  • Building Permit
    document Header Building Permit
    A building permit is required whenever you build, renovate, or alter your property.
  • Change of Use Application
    document Header Change of Use Application
    A change of use application is required when a new business will change the use of an existing building
  • Electrical Permit Application
    document Header Electrical Permit Application
    A permit to conduct electrical work in the Town of Cheraw
  • Fence Permit Application
    document Header Fence Permit Application
    A fence permit application is required before any fence is erected in the Town of Cheraw
  • Gas Permit Application
    document Header Gas Permit Application
  • Homeowner Disclosure Form
    document Header Homeowner Disclosure Form
  • Mechanical Permit Application
    document Header Mechanical Permit Application
  • Mobile Food Vendor Permit
    document Header Mobile Food Vendor Permit
    The application for a permit to be a mobile food vendor in the Town of Cheraw
  • New Business Inspection Checklist
    document Header New Business Inspection Checklist
    A checklist of common code violations/concerns for new businesses.
  • Plumbing Permit Application
    document Header Plumbing Permit Application
  • Renewable Energy Systems Permit
    document Header Renewable Energy Systems Permit
    The permit for a renewable energy system.
  • Sign Permit Application
    document Header Sign Permit Application
    A sign permit is required prior to the erection of any sign in the Town of Cheraw.
  • Water/Sewer Connection Application
    document Header Water/Sewer Connection Application
    This application is to connect to the Town's water and/or sewer system
  • Zoning Compliance Application
    document Header Zoning Compliance Application