April 13, 2015 11:56 am
Updated: April 14, 2015 7:27 pm

Planning home renos in Edmonton? You might need a permit

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WATCH ABOVE: Maria Stopainig from the City of Edmonton stopped by the Morning News to explain what does and does not require a permit.

EDMONTON — As the days grow longer and snow disappears, Edmonton residents often get the itch to spruce up the yard and home, but many forget some alterations and installations require a permit.

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“The rationale for permits is really to enhance safety for people of Edmonton. It’s a safety aspect, as well as just ensuring that the appearance works with the neighbourhood,” Maria Stopainig, Director, Customer Service Centre, Office of the City Manager, said on the Morning News.

As part of the Nail Down Your Permit campaign, the City of Edmonton wants residents to start their permit application early for their summer construction projects.

“We encourage residents to apply for development permits early to beat the rush that we tend to see from May to September,” said Callum Kennaway, Acting Director for the Current Planning Service Centre.

The city says the most important factor in getting a quick approval is to have all your documents and plans completed accurately when applying.

It doesn’t matter if it’s a ‘do it yourself’ project or the work is being contracted out, the homeowner is responsible for getting all their permits in order. Some of the backyard projects you might be considering this summer that require permits include:

The links above give details specific to those types of projects, including permit fees. The city says the fees are often is based upon the value of the project, and residents should contact Licences & Permits for a more exact estimate.

Some home renovations such as basement developments, adding air conditioning or putting up a satellite dish also require a permit. (Click HERE for the full list.)

There are several types of permits: development, building and other more specific permits for things like electrical, plumbing and gas, heating and ventilation.

“The development permit looks at the location and the size, and the building permit looks at the design and build. It’s really to ensure that it’s built to code,” said Stopainig.

Projects that don’t require an alteration to the home don’t need a permit. They include:

  • Roof replacement
  • Painting and tiling
  • Carpet replacement
  • Basement dry-walling
  • Counter top replacement
  • Cupboard door alterations
  • Window and door replacements (for same size)

If you aren’t sure whether or not you need a permit, Stopainig says the best thing is to check out the City of Edmonton’s website, call 311, or visit the city’s Licences & Permits office on the 5th floor of the HSBC building, located at 10250 101 St. in downtown Edmonton.

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