Most frequent questions and answers
The body responsible for enforcing Ontario’s Building Code in your area issues permits for the construction, renovation, demolition and certain changes of use of buildings, and for the installation, alteration, extension or repair of on-site sewage systems. Building Code enforcement is generally carried out by municipal building departments, although in the case of on-site sewage systems, enforcement in some areas is conducted by boards of health and conservation authorities.
Under the Ontario Building Code Act, a building permit is required for the construction of a new building, an addition, or alteration of any building or structure with a building area of over 10 square metres (approximately 108 square feet).
You can get an application for a building permit from either your municipality or the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing’s Building Code website under “publications”. (Visit www.ontario.ca/buildingcode.) But it’s a good idea to talk to the staff at your municipality before you apply. They can tell you what information, drawings and plans you’ll have to include with the application and whether you’ll need any other permits or approvals. Note that building permit applications are submitted to your municipality, not to the provincial government.
When you apply, you’ll have to attach drawings, plans, and other documents. You may also have to pay a fee.
The GST/HST Rebate for New Housing Construction is a program administered by the Government of Canada. For your reference, please find links and telephone numbers to the Government of Canada’s Revenue Agency below:
Forms Line: 1-800-959-2221
Info Line: 1-800-959-5525
Building permits allow your municipality to protect the interests of both individuals and the community as a whole. By reviewing and approving building plans before any work is done, the municipality can ensure that buildings comply with:
- the Building Code, which sets standards for the design and construction of buildings to meet objectives such as health, safety, fire protection, accessibility and resource conservation
- the local zoning by-law and other planning controls on buildings
- other applicable legislation, including conservation authority approvals and certain requirements under the Environmental Protection Act.