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June 2009

Building Permits

· A HOMEOWNER'S GUIDE·

Introduction:

As a new homeowner, you may find someday that you may outgrow your present home. Renovation may be in your future, and you can include anything from adding a room, fixing up the basement or building a garage, to remodeling the interior of a house. If you are planning future home improvement that this guide will tell you what you need to know about applying for a building permit from the Town of Renfrew. The Aim of this guide is to assist the homeowner who wishes to alter, add to his/her home or build a new home, install rooms in the basement, build a retaining wall, add rooms in the house, add a sundeck, add a carport, garage, a second floor or build a fence, canopy or make repairs and how to obtain required approval permits.

WHERE TO GO: Town of Renfrew 127 Raglan Street South, Renfrew, Ontario K7V 1P8

DEPARTMENT: Department of Development and Works 2nd Floor Phone: (613) 432-8166 Fax: (613) 432-8265

What is a building permit?

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.

Why are building permits needed?

Building permits are necessary to ensure that zoning requirements, fire and structural safety standards and other building standards are met, primarily for safety reasons.

NOTE: It is the homeowner's responsibility to ensure a building permit is obtained when required.

What projects require a building permit?

Under the Ontario Building Code Act, a building permit is required for the construction or alteration of any freestanding structure over 10m² (108sq.ft.) in area. The following is a list of typical projects that REQUIRE a permit: · Decks · New fireplace · Completion of roughed-in fireplaces · Porches · Sunrooms · Solariums · Carports · Attached or detached garages · Dormers · One or two storey additions · Furnace replacements to a greater efficiency · Plumbing and/or drains · Major duct work changes · New or structural alterations to windows or doors · Adding or removing most walls · Basement or main floor walkouts · Swimming pools

What projects do not require a building permit?

A building permit is NOT required for a detached accessory structure, which measures less than 10m² (108sq.ft.) in area. (An accessory structure is any building or structure other than the house. The following is a list of projects that DO NOT REQUIRE a permit: · Air conditioning units or heat pumps added to existing systems · Pool heaters · Painting and decorating NOTE: Although a · Landscaping building permit may · Fences not be required, you · Asphalt roof shingling (no structural) must still comply · Eaves troughs with the · Minor repairs to masonry requirements of the · Damp-proofing basements Zoning By-law · Kitchen or bathroom cupboards without plumbing · Free-standing satellite dishes

Other Approvals

In addition to, or instead of a building permit, you may require other approvals. Our Building Department staff will let you know which approvals are necessary. Some examples are shown below: COMMITTEE OF ADJUSTMENT If your proposal does not comply with the Zoning By-law, you may seek permission from the Committee of Adjustment for a minor variance. SITE PLAN CONTROL If your property is in an area subject to site plan control, you may have to submit an application for site plan approval to the Department of Development and Works. For further information, please call 613-432-8166. DEMOLITION PERMITS In addition to a building permit, you may be required to obtain a demolition permit from the Development and Works Department.

TIP: Not certain whether you need a permit? Just call the Department of Development and Works at 613-432-8166.

Preparing your Application...

If you have a good working knowledge of houses and construction you can design your own project. Develop your ideas on paper with rough floor plans and specifications and have a draftsperson or other knowledgeable person transform your sketches into proper plans. If you feel that your project is too complicated to handle yourself, we recommend that you acquire the services of a qualified person. All work indicated on your drawings must conform to the Ontario Building Code, Ontario Plumbing Regulation and the Town of Renfrew zoning by-laws. ZONING REQUIREMENTS Zoning specifies the uses permitted within particular areas and contains regulations governing such things as building setbacks, height, mass and coverage. You should contact someone in the Development and Works Department to determine the specific requirements for your addition or alteration. They will require your street address, lot number and registered plan number to establish the zoning requirements. This information can be found by checking your tax bill.

NOTE: Certification by a Professional Engineer is required for certain prefabricated structures of construction components. Check with Development and Works Staff.

Drawings required for building permits:

· Required at the time of filing for an application for permits. · If you find that you are unable to do the drawings yourself, then you must obtain the services of a qualified person. · All drawings not completed by the Homeowner, must be completed by a designer qualified with the Ministry of Housing.

NOTE: If trusses are used for roof or floor, truss design must be stamped by a Professional Engineer or Architect.

HOUSE

Two (2) sets of plans to scale with the following:

· Site Plan · Foundation plan · Floor plan · Cross section · All elevations · Fireplace details · Plumbing application by licensed plumber · If basement under garage, design of garage slab must be by a Professional Engineer ADDITIONS Two (2) sets of plans to scale with the following: · Site Plan to show all buildings on the property (sizes and distance from all property lines) · Foundation plan · Floor plan of addition and single line drawing of floor plan of existing house · Cross section · Elevation of all views ATTACHED GARAGE Two (2) sets of plans to scale with the following: · Site Plan as above for additions · Foundation plan · Cross section · Elevation views · Floor plan showing windows and doors between house and garage DETATCHED GARAGE & SHEDS · Site plan as above for additions · Front view showing height of building, roof, wall and floor details CARPORTS · Site Plan as above for additions · Cross section, showing roof, beam, post and pier details · Side elevations showing partial enclosure, if any POOLS · Above Ground Site plan showing fences, location of buildings and pool Height of fences · In Ground Site plan showing fences, location of buildings and pool Height of fences NEW BASEMENT ADDITIONS · Site Plan to show all buildings on the property · Foundation plan/floor plan · Cross section

Submitting your Application...

Building permit application forms are available in the Development and Works Department, Renfrew Town Hall, 2nd floor. If you would like an application, please call the Department. Your completed application form should be brought to the Building Department accompanied by the following: · Two sets of building plans (floor plans, elevations and/or cross sections), folded into an 8½" x 14" file folder. * If drawings are too bulky for folding, rolled drawings are acceptable · Two copies of your property survey OR site plan · A building permit fee in cash or by cheque, payable to the "Town of Renfrew". The fee is determined by staff in the Building Department and is based on the estimated cost of your project.

NOTE: Incomplete applications or plans will not be accepted.

The Approval process:

The staff at the Development and Works office will review your application to confirm that the proposed work complies with the Building Code and other laws set out in the Building Code, such as local zoning by-laws. Applications for a simple alteration or addition can be processed fairly quickly, but more complex proposals may take longer. The Building Code requires that a municipality review a permit application within a certain timeframe where the application meets the criteria set out in the Code. For example, the timeframe on a permit application for a house is 10 days. For a more complex building, such as a hospital, the timeframe is 30 days. Within this timeframe, a municipality must either issue the permit or refuse it with full reasons for denial. In order to be issued a permit, the proposed construction must comply with the Building Code and with the applicable laws set out in the Building Code. If you need a zoning change or a minor variance from the zoning by-law (municipal zoning is considered applicable law), or if the proposed construction does not comply with the Building Code, a permit will not be issued until the zoning change or minor variance has been obtain, or the proposed construction complies with the Building Code. If your property is covered by a site plan control by-law, you will not get a building permit until the plans and drawings have been approved by the municipality. See the Zoning Bylaw, minor variance or site plan control information pamphlets for more information about each of these

What can you do if your application is turned down?

If the town refuses your application, you will be told why. If you can't resolve the problem with the town then you have a few options for appealing their decision.

· If the problem relates to technical requirements set out in the Building Code, you may apply to the Building Code Commission. The Building Code Commission is an independent adjudicative tribunal of the provincial government whose mandate is to hear disputes related to compliance with the technical requirements of the Building Code. If you wish to apply to the Building Code Commission for a hearing, you can find their address at the end of this guide. You can also find the Building Code Commission's application forms and their Guidelines, Policies and Procedures on the Building Code website (www.ontario.ca/buildingcode) under "Appeals and Approvals". · If the problem relates to compliance with other applicable laws, such as interpretation of the zoning by-law, you can appeal to a judge of the Superior Court of Justice, who will review the zoning and decide whether your application complies with the zoning by-law. You may want to talk to a lawyer first.

What happens during construction?

The Building Code sets out the stages of construction at which different types of buildings/sewage systems require inspections. It is the responsibility of the permit holder to contact the development and works office for an inspection when the project is at the stages of construction set out in the Building Code. The town building official is required to carry out the inspection within two working days of being notified. For construction of a sewage system, the inspector has five working days to conduct the inspection. During the inspection, a building inspector will inspect the work to determine if it is carried out in accordance with the Building Code, your permit and the approved plans. The inspector must always be able to see the work. If it's different from the work that was approved and, unless you get permission for a revision to your plans, you will be told to correct it. If you don't, the town can take enforcement action, such as issuing orders authorized under the Building Code Act, 1992. You will also be required to:

· show your permit in a window or other place where it can be easily seen · keep copies of the plans on the site · tell the development and works department about any changes to the proposed construction, which will also have to be approved by the town.

What about demolition?

Before you take down all or part of a building, you will have to apply to the Before you take down all or part of a building, you will have to apply to town for a demolition demolition permit. is much the same as for a your municipality for a permit. The processThe process is much the same as building permit, but but some special situations affect your application. for a building permit, some special situations maymay affect your application. In a demolition control area, for example, you will not be able to demolish a residential property area, for example, you a demolition permit issued a In a demolition controluntil you have received will not be able to demolishby the municipal council. residential property until you have received a demolition permit issued by the municipal council. Or, because of the building's historic or architectural importance, it may be designated, or be building's historic or architectural importance, under the Or, because of the intended for designation, as a heritage buildingit may be Ontario Heritage Act. In for case, demolition will require council's designated, or be intended thatdesignation, as a heritage building under the approval and there may have to be negotiations over how some of the Ontario Heritage Act. In that case, demolition will require council's unique character of the building can be preserved. approval and there may have to be negotiations over how some of the unique character of the building can be preserved.

Inspections:

Several inspections are required during construction to ensure that all work is done according to the approved plans. They include the following: · Footing formwork prior to placing concrete · Foundation dampproofing and waterproofing and installation of drainage tiles prior to back-filling · Roughed-in plumbing and drains prior to covering · Roughed-in heating ducts prior to covering · Structural framing prior to insulating · Insulation and vapor barriers · Final inspection for building, plumbing and heating Inspections do not happen automatically. It is your responsibility to ensure that either you or your contractor contacts the town to request an inspection at least 24 hours before work proceeds from one inspection stage to the next. This will ensure that your project proceeds as approved. The bottom of your building permit has the details.

What if you want to change a building's use?

If you want to change the way you use all or part of the building, you may need a change of use permit, even if you are not planning any construction. A building evaluation may have to be done to make sure that the existing building can support the proposed use. Different uses have different Building Code requirements. Call your municipal building department to find out whether you will need a change of use permit.

What happens if you contravene 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 offence could result in a maximum fine of $100,000 and $200,000 for subsequent infractions. Failure to comply with an order from the municipal building department is also an offence under the Building Code Act, 1992.

How can you find out more?

For more information about BuildingDundas/Glengarry,community, contact the Department of Development and Works. For about land use For more information about Building Permits in your community contact the Department of Development and Works. For information information Permits in your Kawartha Lakes, Renfrew, Peterborough, about landin Ontario, visitin Ontario, visit the Municipal Affairs and Housingat: www.mah.gov.on.ca or contact your nearest Municipal Services planning use planning the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing website website at: www.mah.gov.on.ca or contact your nearest Haliburton, Hastings, Lanark, Northumberland) Municipal Services Office (MSO): Office (MSO):

Northeastern Municipal Service Office 159 Cedar Street, Suite 401 Eastern Municipal Service Office Central Municipal Service Office Central Municipal Service Office Sudbury, Ontario, P3E 6A5 nd 8 EasternLane, Rockwood House Estate Municipal Service Office nd Floor 777 Bay Street, 2 Floor 777 Bay Street, 2 8 Estate Ontario, K7M House General Inquiry: 705-564-0120 Lane, Rockwood 9A8 Kingston, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 2E5 Toronto, Ontario, M5G 2E5 Toll Free: 800-461-1193 Kingston, Ontario, K7M 9A8 General Inquiry: 613-545-2100 General Inquiry: 416-585-6226 General Inquiry: 416-585-6226 General Inquiry: Perry Sound, (Frontenac, Leeds & Greenville, Lennox (Cochrane, Algoma, Manitoulin, Sudbury, 613-545-2100Nipissing, & Addington) Toll Free: 800-668-0230 Toll Free: 800-267-9438 (Frontenac, Leeds & Greenville, Lennox & Addington) Timiskaming) Western Municipal Service Office nd (Ottawa, Prescott-Russell, Prince Edward, Stormont, Toll Free: 800-267-9438 659 Exeter Road, 2 Floor Western Municipal Service Office Dundas/Glengarry, Kawartha Lakes, Renfrew, Peterborough, (Ottawa, Prescott-Russell, Prince Edward, Stormont, London, Ontario, N6E 1L3 659 Exeter Road, 2nd Floor Haliburton, Hastings, Lanark, Northumberland) Dundas/Glengarry, Kawartha Lakes, Renfrew, Peterborough, General Inquiry: 519-873-4020 London, Ontario, N6E 1L3 Haliburton, Hastings, Lanark, Northumberland) General Inquiry: 519-873-4020 Northeastern Municipal Service Office Northwestern Municipal Service Office Toll Free: 800-265-4736 159 Cedar Street, Suite 410 Northeastern Municipal Service Office 435 James Street South, Suite 223 (Ottawa, Prescott-Russell, Prince Edward, Stormont,

Thunder Bay, Ontario, P7E 6S7 Northwestern Municipal Service General Inquiry: 807-475-1651 Office 435 James Street South, Suite 223 Toll Free: 800-465-5027

Thunder Bay, Ontario, P7E 6S7 General Inquiry: 807-475-1651 Toll Free: 800-465-5027 (Thunder Bay, Kenora, Rainy River)

Sudbury, Ontario,Suite 401 159 Cedar Street, P3E 6A5 General Inquiry: 705-564-0120 Sudbury, Ontario, P3E 6A5 Toll Free: 800-461-1193 General Inquiry: 705-564-0120 (Cochrane, Algoma, Manitoulin, Sudbury, Perry Sound, Nipissing, Toll Free: 800-461-1193 Timiskaming)

(Cochrane, Algoma, Manitoulin, Sudbury, Perry Sound, Nipissing, Timiskaming)

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