Most municipalities in Canada require building permits. If you’re doing a renovation or home improvement project and are wondering if a building permit is needed, you should check on your local municipality’s website. Building departments will help provide information about what will and won’t require a permit.
If you’re doing a renovation or home improvement project and have decided to omit the required building permit, you’ll want to be careful the city doesn’t find out. The city will often force you to get a retroactive permit and often charge twice the initial fee. They may also put a stop work order in place or, even worse, force you to remove everything built without a permit.
Applying for a Building Permit
Applying for a permit is easier than most homeowners assume it is. Make sure you have quality drawings and all the necessary documentation required by your local city, and the process can be painless and relatively quick. Historically, you had to physically go into your local city hall with a cheque in hand and a paper package, but many municipalities are now accepting building permits online. If you need clarification on what your particular municipality requires, you can contact them directly. Alternatively, we can help you as part of your house plan customization.
Who can apply for a building Permit?
Believe it or not, anyone can apply for a building permit in Canada. Most commonly, architects, designers, contractors or builders are the ones applying, but homeowners can apply for their own building permit. Applying on your own can save you thousands of dollars and is more accessible than the experts want you to think!
Architects & Home Designers
In larger cities, it’s common for architects or home designers to apply for permits on behalf of their clients. They often build this into the design fee; therefore, homeowners are relatively unaware of the process. Some designers will give their clients the option to do the application themselves. Or they’ll guide them through the process to ensure they have everything they need for a seamless submission.
Contractors and Builders
In smaller communities, it’s common for the builder or contractor to submit the building permit application on behalf of their clients. Contractors and builders often offer a full-service build or renovation package, and applying for a building permit is included in the fee.
Homeowners are more than capable of applying for their own permits. Each city or municipality requires unique documentation, so it’s essential to research your local requirements. Check your city’s website, call them or reach out to Adaptive House Plans as part of your house plan customization. Some city websites can be overwhelming and unclear, so contact us if you have any questions.
Who can apply for a building permit in Canada
If you’re looking at saving some money, go ahead and apply for a permit on your own. Adaptive House Plans is here to help you along the way!