Works permit : the administrative steps before renovations

Depending on the size of the project, it may be necessary to obtain a works permit before starting the renovation of his house. In Quebec, the steps are taken with the municipality. A procedure that you can follow yourself or delegate to your contractor.

Have plans and estimates ready

As the application for a permit must be accompanied by plans and an estimate of the cost of the works, it is essential to define a clear project, to have corresponding plans and to obtain an evaluation of the works in order to have all the information and documents that must be attached to a permit application.

Submit the permit application

Most renovations require a building permit prior to project start-up, as it is usually only the repair and maintenance works that are exempt from the permit.

A permit application file must include the permit application form accompanied by other various documents that generally are:

  • A copy of the certificate of location if the renovation includes an extension
  • A detailed description of the works to be done
  • A plan projecting the planned works
  • Full contact details of the project manager and the contractor, if applicable
  • An estimate of the cost of the work

Fees are payable upon the deposit of the permit application: they varies according to borough and can go from 200 $ to 3 000 $.

The municipality sends within 5 days of the permit application the declaration of the works to the Régie du bâtiment. It also informs the Commission de la construction du Québec and Revenu Québec. It should also be noted that the regulations applying to renovations vary from one borough to another. Depending on the municipality, the state of preparation and the complexity of the file, the permit application demand can takes from one day to six months.

The customer care service: a precious help

Some contractors offer a complete service including the procedures with the municipal services. Once the sketch and budget are accepted by the client, they establish the plans and specifications that will be used to submit the permit application. They take care of filling out the form, to submit the permit application with all the required documents, and follow its progress. During the the processing of the request by the municipality, the company meets with the client to choose the finishing materials in order to be able to start the work as soon as the permit is obtained. As soon as it is issued, a new appointment is established with the client to establish a schedule of work and a billing schedule.

The display of the permit

Once the permit has been obtained, and throughout the entire project, the permit issued by the municipality must be displayed prominently on the construction site. A municipal inspector may at any time do control visits of the site to ensure that the work is carried out in accordance with the documents and plans contained in the permit file.

It is essential to detain the renovation permit before the start of the project, as work performed without a permit can leads to significant costs, with fines ranging from $ 350 to $ 4,000. In addition, a request for a minor exemption is not accepted for work done without a permit. As for work that does not require a permit, they still require a declaration of work to inform the municipality of the changes made to the property.