Software company BUILDERadius has introduced BluePrince, permitting and inspections software that aims to streamline the permitting process by letting builders communicate with building departments over the Web or via a cell phone. The company's strategy is to give the software away for free to municipalities and to charge builders and contractors a fee to access the service.
BUILDERadius offers two packages. The basic service costs $9.95 a month and lets builders use any computer with Internet access to apply for a permit, pay for a permit, request an inspection, or check the status of an inspection.
For $19.95 a month, builders can use any Web-based cell phone to apply for a permit, check its status, and check the building inspector's routing schedule, which shows what time the inspector will visit the builder's site.
"The construction business revolves around the cell phone, which is why we had to roll this application out on the cell phone," says Bill Ward, CEO of BUILDERadius.
Ward says BluePrince is running in 10 cities and counties, and he hopes to sign on another 50 cities and counties by year's end.