For most construction projects, you'll need a Development Permit or Building Permits. Whether you're renovating an existing building, constructing a new house, or just putting up a baby barn or shed, you need to obtain a permit before starting the job. Permits are required for small projects such as signs, awnings, decks, porches, swimming pools, and sheds. You'll also need a permit for repairs, alteration or additions or demolitions of existing buildings (demolition permit). Even if no construction occurs, a Development Permit is needed for a "change of use" such as a new business.
To get started with the permit process, please call or visit the Planning and Development Department ahead of time to find out if the project is permitted and what the requirements are prior to development.
Building and Development permit application forms are required for development and may be picked up at the Planning and Development Department. You can also find the forms on our Applications, Permits, and Licenses page.
Here are the main types of permits:
- Development: where structures are placed on a lot in relation to a property boundary, line and other structures on the lot
- Building: how structures are built
- Sign: before a sign may be erected
- Demolition: removal of any building or major structure
- Occupancy: before a building can be occupied
Other application forms include:
- Amendment to the Land Use By-law (Rezoning)
- Amendment to the Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use By-law
- Assignment of Agent
- Boarding Up
- Development Application
- Repeal of Subdivision
- Site Plan Approval
- Subdivision Approval
- Surface Run-Off Approval
- Swimming Pool
Who Should You Talk To?
The Development Officer reviews Development Permit applications to ensure the construction complies with the Land Use By-Law. The Building Official reviews Building, Demolition, and Occupancy Permit applications to ensure the construction complies with the National Building Code. You can find their contact info on the bottom of this page.
What Information Do You Need?
You'll need the following basic information for your Building/Development Permit Application.
Where the property is located, including the street address, the size of the lot, and the owner's name. If you have a location certificate or survey plan and/or the deed for the property (Schedule "A") it may be helpful to provide these as well.
Show the size and location of all existing and proposed buildings or additions. The plot plan must show the lot dimensions and the distance from the exterior of the building to the front, side, and rear lot lines, as well as the distance to any existing buildings. Driveways should be sketched in and the names of abutting streets should be shown.
Land Use Information
A complete description of the existing use of the land and any buildings already on the property (e.g., two (2) unit dwelling, single family dwelling, vacant) as well as a description of the proposed use of the land and buildings.
Full construction information, including estimated cost of construction, size and dimensions of the building and details of foundation and footing, size and spacing of floor joists, roof rafters or trusses, interior and exterior walls, insulation, vapour barrier and the like. You may wish to have your contractor assist with this part of the application form.
Once you've submitted your application and paid the necessary fee (if any), our staff will review it to make sure the project complies with the Land Use By-law and the National Building Code. A Building Permit cannot be issued, however, until all external approvals (including a Municipal Development Permit) have been received. It's your responsibility to complete and submit all required forms to the appropriate agencies and once approved, to supply copies of the approvals to the Planning and Development Department.
Please remember that construction may not begin until after Building and Development Permits have been issued. For more details about the process, including expected wait times, check out the PDF at the bottom of this page.
Demolition permits are required when you're demolishing any building or structure. It's important to keep your receipts from the Construction and Debris Site (C&D Site) and submit them to the Building Official to ensure that the materials are taken care of in a proper and sustainable fashion. It's also important to submit to the Building Official a diagram showing the location that the sewer and water laterals were capped so as to facilitate reconnection when the need arises.
During construction, periodic inspections are required to ensure construction is being done in accordance with the National Building Code. You are responsible for notifying the Building Inspector at least 2 business days before an inspection is required. For new homes, inspections at the following stages are mandatory:
- the excavation before footings are placed
- after footings are placed
- the site before commencing back-filling of the laterally-supported foundation, before a super structure is placed on the foundation
- the framing, roof, plumbing and mechanical
- insulation and vapour barrier before wall framing is covered
Keep in mind that the National Building Code is only a minimum set of standards. Our inspections are not a substitute for the care you would normally take if you were doing the work for yourself or when hiring a contractor to complete your project.
Glenn Muise - Building Official
Phone: (902) 742-1505
Fax: (902) 749-1474
Joanne Earle – Development Officer
Phone: (902) 742-1505
Fax: (902) 749-1474