How are Entitlement Services Different than Permit Expeditor Solutions?

How are Entitlement Services Different than Permit Expeditor Solutions?

Most clients of Permit Advisors know the difference between entitlement services and permit expeditor solutions in a general sense, however, when it comes down to some of the finer points things can get a little nuanced. In this article, I will separate the key differences between entitlement services and permit expeditor solutions.  The essential differences in entitlements and permitting boil down to three key differences: interfacing with elected officials, timelines, and price tag.

Elected Officials

The biggest difference between entitlements and permit expediter solutions is who you interface with in order to get approval for your project from. For permits, you work with professionals hired according to certificate and education by other government workers, and with entitlements, you are most likely trying to get approval from elected officials from a local counsel or commission. If the official is someone voted into office it is an entitlement you are working towards.

Sometimes it can be jarring to folks to work towards a conditional use permit or a change of use permit as they go through the political process. Sometimes, in order to get approval for those permits you will have to go through the entitlement process, however, when you are working to get a permit *hint hint* it is a permit solution you are getting.


The next biggest difference between entitlements and permit expediting solutions is the timelines in the process. Entitlements are usually pre-permit in the timeline, as you cannot expect to get a permit approved for a change of use or conditional use permit without first being approved for the entitlement. Another big facet of entitlements is they normally take longer than permits in the process. Entitlements involve getting put on the agenda for a meeting, informing the neighborhood and community, and waiting at least a month for residents to bring up possible concerns for the project.

After the council or commission hearings things usually pick up, but even so, they take longer than the average permit. When you are assessing whether a project is worth the money and effort for entitlements it’s important to factor in the timeline you are willing to work with.

Price Tag

Probably the most commonly asked question about entitlements and permitting is with regard to costs. The capital expenses needed to even begin these types of projects are pretty high as valuations can soar to millions of dollars, additionally, operational expenses during the entitlement phase of a project need to remain consistent – that is consistently high. On the opposite side of the spectrum, permitting costs are pretty formulaic as they are usually calculated based on size, scope, and valuation. To put it more simply, entitlements cost more than permits do.

Do you need a permit expeditor or do you need an entitlements solution? Many exciting and cutting-edge projects can require both, it’s important to know when to use whom as some permit expeditors do have referrals to folks who can work entitlements. But, do ensure you know when to use whom and choose professionals that specialize rather than one-stop shops. If you want more information on how to vet your consultants check out our article, “Who You Need in Phase I”.

About us: Permit Advisors Inc is a nationwide permit expediting, entitlement, and consulting firm based out of Beverly HIlls, CA. We have established relationships with municipalities nation-wide and implement time as well as cost-saving strategies to efficiently complete projects. We provide a project management team to ensure every aspect of the project is given specific attention while maintaining open communication between the jurisdiction, consultants, and our clients. We serve retailers, architects, landlords, tenant coordinators, contractors, and franchisees nationwide in the hotel, retail, restaurant, mixed-use, multifamily, entertainment, grocery, and logistical plant development industries. Contact us today for a consultation at

  • entitlement consultant
  • Entitlement Professional
  • entitlement services
  • entitlements
  • land use
  • permit expediter
  • permit expeditor
  • planning commission
  • zoning
Nov 14, 2016 By admin