All You Need To Know - Ontario Building Inspection and Other Permits
The Building Code defines the stages of construction in which different types of buildings must be subject to mandatory inspections. When a project is in the construction phase as defined by the Building Code, it is the responsibility of the permit holder to contact the municipal government for an inspection.
The municipal building official is required to conduct the inspection within two business days upon notification. For the construction of a sewer system, the inspector has five business days to conduct the inspection. During the inspection, the inspector will check to ensure that the work is being done in accordance with the Building Code, your permit and approved plans.
You will also be required to:
- Display your permit at a window or other visible places.
- Keep a copy of the plans on the site.
- Tell the municipal officials about any changes to the proposed building, which must also be approved by the municipality.
Inspectors must always be able to see your work. If it differs from the approved work, you will be told to make immediate corrections unless you get permission to amend the plans. If you fail to do so, the municipal government can take enforcement action, such as issuing an order authorized by the Building Code Act, 1992.
Before you can demolish all or part of a building, you must apply for a demolition permit. The procedure is essentially the same as for a building permit, but there are some special circumstances that may affect your application, such as, in a demolition control zone, you cannot demolish residential property until you have received a demolition permit from the municipal council.
You may need a separate estate approval from the municipality or Ontario Heritage Trust, including an estate approval to demolish the building or structure located on the property, if your property is:
- Designated under the Ontario Heritage Act,
- Located in a heritage conservation district, or
- Subject to a heritage conservation easement (a legal agreement to protect heritage elements that applies to anyone who owns the land).
If your property is not designated, but is listed on the Municipal Heritage Register, the Ontario Heritage Act requires the property owner to initiate a notice to the municipal council 60 days in advance stating their intention to demolish or remove the building or structure located on the property.
How to Change the Use of the Building
If you want to change the usage of your building, you may need a different permit, even if you do not intend to make any construction changes. A building assessment may be required to ensure that the existing building can safely accommodate the proposed use.
Different uses have different Building Code requirements. You should contact your municipal building department to find out whether you will need a change of use permit before advancing with constructions.
Consequences for Violating the Building Code Act, 1992
An individual who is charged and found guilty of an offence under the Building Code Act, 1992, such as building without a permit, can be fined up to $50,000 for a first offence and up to $100,000 for subsequent offences. For a corporation, a first-time offence could result in a maximum fine of $500,000 and $1,500,000 for subsequent infractions.
Failure to comply with an order from the municipal building department is also an offence under the Building Code Act, 1992.
Other Approvals that May Be Required
In addition to the planning approvals and building permits required for building projects, other permits and approvals may be required in special circumstances, for example, the Ontario Heritage Act, the Conservation Authority and the Ministry of Transportation. These approvals are considered applicable laws, which are under the Building Code and must be complied with before a building permit can be issued.
As you can tell, there are so much more that go into renovation and making modifications to your home. From building permits and demolition permits to other legislations and approvals, it can be a very long and tiring process. Don’t worry! Our knowledgeable and experienced architects can help with that!
At JY Construction, we’re committed to create spaces that are functional, sustainable, and aesthetically pleasing while meeting the specific needs of the client. Feel free to contact us for consultation and we are more than happy to answer any questions you may have. Looking forward to meeting you!