I’m not sure if I need a permit

“Do I need a permit?” is, by far, the most common question asked by our clients. The answer is not always simple, but, here are some clarifications:

First of all, there are two types of permit: Development Permits and Building Permits.

A Development Permit ensures that you meet the rules of the land use bylaw (zoning). It dictates some conditions regarding the allowed use of the property, the intensity of that use, the building height, the building site coverage, the setbacks from the property lines and other buildings and parking requirements.

A Building Permit ensures that your construction will comply to the building code which addresses building and fire safety. This permit dictates how the construction will be built.


When do I need a Development Permit?

A development permit may be required if you are planning the following:

Construct a new building, in residential, industrial or commercial zoning

Alter an existing building

Change the use of a building

Construct an accessory building

Construct a secondary suite

Apply for a discretionary use

Erect a temporary structure


When is a Building Permit Required ?

A building permit is required if you are planning the following:

Construction of a new building

Alteration and repair of a building

Relocation and demolition of a building

Change of use of a building.

What is a Building Permit?

A building permit is one that allows the construction of a building or structure to move forward on the condition that it addresses and is in compliance with the building code of a city, town or county. A building permit is necessary when any construction, relocation, alteration, demolition or repair is taking place on a property. In some instance, some buildings and structures are exempt, such as...

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What is a Development Permit?

A development permit provides permission for a specific type of development to take place on a site. The permit can be for any development such as the construction of a new house or the change of use of a commercial space from a retail use to a restaurant. The review process ensures that the proposed development meets the regulation of the local Land Use Bylaw (Zoning). For example, the developmen...

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We're here to help with all your development and construction project permits:

How do I get a permit for my project?

There are really two ways to get a permit for your project : (1) DIY and (2) Permit Masters.

Do it yourself (DIY).

Find a little help in our “Permit Pointers”  blog.

  • 1Go to the city website for information on Development and Building Permits.
  • 2Download digital PDF list of requirements.
  • 3Download digital PDF application and forms.
  • 4Review the land use bylaws for the regulations of your site (i.e. setbacks, height...).
  • 5Create a site plan (bird’s-eye view) drawing to scale with all property dimensions. Include north arrow, street address, legal descriptions, property lines, easements, and utility rights-of-way and all other requirements requested by the city.
  • 6Create building plans of proposed construction to scale including plan views and structural cross-sections. Include locations, spans, sizes, grades, and spacing of structure.
  • 7Ensure that the drawings meet all Building Code requirements.
  • 8Wait in line at City Hall.
  • 9Present application.
  • 10Make revisions as required.
  • 11Return to City Hall and reapply.
  • 12Hope everything is in order.
See 8 more steps

Do it yourself (DIY)

It’s an easy 3 step process.

Call us. We will then evaluate what you need and let you know what it will take to get your permit approved



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