To permit or not to permit

The nice weather always brings with it the sounds of hammers, saws, drills and other melodies from the symphony of construction! No more freezing your fingers off taking hurried measurements like in winter.

If you’re building, changing or demolishing  a structure, you’ll need need a permit

But the question always follows: when do I need a building permit? Here’s a few rules of thumb to follow to answer this question.

If you’re building, changing or demolishing  a structure, you’ll need need a permit (with a few exceptions). Yes, this captures a lot of projects, like building additions, decks, gazebos, sheds and garages (that are over 10 sq metres), as well as finally making your main floor open concept. For these major jobs, you should always use a licensed and insured professional who can bring your vision to life.

For some things, like building a new garage, you should also touch base with your local planning department to check on things like property lines and zoning requirements.

The city has a team of inspectors who do nothing but drive around checking out construction sites for infractions

Why is the city so tough on permits? Simply put, its a matter of safety. Improper structure can put your family and others in danger, not to mention the risk to damaging property, both private and public. A permit ensures that a licensed inspector has seen the work and is satisfied it meets current building codes.

Oh, and if you want to take the chance and build without a permit, you should know that the city has a team of inspectors who do nothing but drive around checking out construction sites for infractions. The cost of redoing work, materials and down time can add up fast!

Want more info? Check out this list of jobs which need and don’t need permits in the City of Hamilton.

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