The building code sorts the ways that buildings are used into separate "occupancy classifications". Every building is given an occupancy classification when it is built, and each occupancy classification has different building code requirements that go along with it. The requirements reflect the type of hazard or uses in the building. Changing a house to include some commercial use would be reviewed as a mixed use occupancy building and would requires a change of occupancy under the commercial code.
Any aspects of the use that don't meet the requirements for a brand new mixed use building would need to be approved through our Building Code Appeal process. The process takes about a week and the appeal fee is typically $200. View more information on the appeal process.