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A Guide for Home Owners

BEFORE YOU START

Before you start to prepare your drawings, you should check that your proposal will comply with the Town’s Zoning By-laws. The Zoning By-laws specify minimum setbacks from property lines, maximum coverage and other zoning standards that may limit your proposal.  It’s best to find out if these limits will affect your project before you start preparing your drawings.  Zoning information may be obtained from the Planning Departmen

Toronto & East York - (416) 338-0700 , North York - (416) 395-7541, Scarborough - (416) 396-7322, Etobicoke - (416) 394-8055

HOW DO I GET A PERMIT?

1. Prepare drawings which accurately and to scale describe the construction you propose. The drawings submitted

with the permit application need to be detailed enough so that anyone using them would be able to construct

your project. If questions remain regarding how construction will occur, the drawings are not detailed enough.

Standard technical details are available at the local municipal offices to assist in the preparation of your plans.

Where an owner engages the services of another person to perform design activities, that person may be

required to comply with the qualification requirements established by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and

Housing. The attached sample plans are an example of the scope of drawings usually required for an addition to

a house.  THESE DRAWINGS ARE NOT INTENDED FOR USE IN YOUR PERMIT APPLICATION.

2.  Visit the local municipal offices at your municipality and complete a building permit application.

The application is also available on line in the Building and Bylaws section

3.  Provide the required number of copies (usually 2 or 3) of the construction drawings, including a site plan. 4.  The application is signed by the owner of the property or the authorized agent of the owner.

5.  All attachments are submitted with the application.

6.  The permit application form has been completed.

7.  The application includes a Zoning Certificate (ZC) may be required on a case-by-case basis

8. Confirmation that all Applicable Law has been satisfied.

9. The Project Preliminary Review may be required on a case-by-case basis

10. All fees have been paid.

WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO AFTER I GET THE PERMIT?

The Building Permit will be issued or refused within the prescribed period which may range between 10-20 business days if your drawings are complete and the proposed construction meets all legal requirements such as zoning regulations, the Ontario Building Code and the requirements of other agencies such as the Conservation Authority, and the Town’s Public Work’s Department.

Review your approved permit drawings before you start work and keep them on the project site.  The permit must  be posted in a conspicuous place on your property prior to starting work.  You can commence construction any time after obtaining the permit and your permit will remain valid for a minimum of six months.  Local utilities such as hydro, gas and telephone operate independently from the municipality and should be contacted regarding their specific approval and inspection requirements.  All utilities must be contacted prior to commencing any excavation to determine the location of any nearby underground services.

Inspection requirements will be discussed with a building inspector at the time the building permit is issued,

depending on the type of project, and must be arranged by calling the municipal building inspection offices

prior to covering the work.  For a house addition, an inspection is required for footings and foundations, structural framing, plumbing, insulation and vapour barriers and a final inspection before using the new

space.  Smaller projects such as decks and garages will involve fewer inspections.  You will be informed if your project is a “smaller project” for inspection purposes.  Please note that we require 48hrs notice for requesting inspections.

The stages of inspection include:

Excavation - at completion of formwork before pouring footing

Foundations - at completion prior to backfilling

Structural Framing – at completion, including rough-in of plumbing and HVAC

Fire Separation – at completion of wall, floor and shaft fire  separations and fire stopping before installing interior finishes

Insulation & Vapour Barrier – at completion before installing interior finishes

Fire Protection System - at completion of standpipe, sprinkler, fire alarm  and emergency lighting system

Occupancy - when ready for occupancy (this inspection often  takes place as part of a final interior inspection)

Final Interior – at completion of interior construction

Final Exterior – at completion of exterior construction

At this point, all systems are complete and operational and the construction is complete.

If changes to the approved work are anticipated, speak with the inspector to determine if a revision to your permit

is required. PLEASE REMEMBER TO WORK SAFELY!

WHY DO I NEED A PERMIT?

THE ONTARIO BUILDING CODE REQUIRES THAT YOU OBTAIN A BUILDING PERMIT  BEFORE YOU START WORK ON A NEW HOUSE OR AN ADDITION OR ANY SIGNIFICANT ALTERATIONS TO AN EXISTING HOUSE.  THE BUILDING CODE SETS OUT THE

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS FOR SUCH WORK AND IS PARTICULARLY CONCERNED WITH YOUR HEALTH AND SAFETY AND THAT OF OTHER HOMEOWNERS, BUILDING OCCUPANTS, FUTURE OWNERS AND THE COMMUNITY.

THE ONTARIO BUILDING CODE

The Ontario Building Code is a regulation made under the Building Code Act.  The Code is essentially a set of minimum provisions respecting the safety of buildings with reference to public health, fire protection and structural sufficiency.  It is not intended to be a textbook on building design, advice on which should be sought from professional sources.  Its primary

purpose is the promotion of public safety through the application of appropriate uniform building standards.  The provisions in this Code are intended to provide a minimum acceptable level of public safety and building integrity.  They are not intended to be applied to voluntary installations unless specified in the Code.

DEFINITIONS

“building” means

(a) a structure occupying an area greater than ten square metres consisting of a wall, roof and floor or any of them or a structural system serving the function thereof including all plumbing, works, fixtures and service systems appurtenant thereto;

(b) a structure occupying an area of ten square metres or less that contains plumbing, including the plumbing appurtenant thereto,

(c) plumbing not located in a structure,

(c.1) a sewage system; or

(d) structures designated in the building code;

“construct” means to do anything in the erection, installation, extension or material alteration or repair of a building and includes the installation of a building unit fabricated or moved from elsewhere and “construction” has a corresponding meaning; (“construire”, “construction”, “travaux de construction”)

© 2012 www.3elements.ca
3 Elements Architecture & Construction Inc.