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Building Services FAQs

  • Replace existing, same-size doors and windows, subject to distance from property lines
  • Install siding on small residential buildings, subject to distance from property lines
  • Build a utility shed under 10 m² (108 square feet)
  • Reshingle a roof, provided there is no structural work (asphalt roof shingling only)
  • Install eavestroughs, if drainage is contained on your property
  • Replace or increase insulation, dry-wall or plaster
  • Damp-proof basements
  • Paint or decorate
  • Install kitchen or bathroom cupboards without plumbing
  • Erect a fence (except for swimming pools - pool enclosure permit required)
  • Replace existing forced air furnace (no duct work or venting alterations)

A Building Code Identification Number, or BCIN, is the unique identifying number assigned to individuals who file their qualifications with the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, and firms which register with the Ministry. The BCIN is used for several purposes: you may need to provide it on building permit applications in all correspondence with the Ministry, and in any other building-related work that requires a qualified person or registered firm.

Ontario Building Code Qualification and Registration

The body responsible for enforcing Ontario’s Building Code in our area issues permits for the construction, renovation, demolition and changes of use of buildings. Building Code enforcement is generally carried out by municipal building departments. Building permits give legal permission to construct or demolish.

Building permits allow your municipality to protect the interests of both individuals and the community. By reviewing and approving building plans before any work is done, the municipality can ensure that buildings comply with:

You must obtain a building permit before you:

  • Construct any new building over ten square meters in area or place another structure, such as a mobile home, on your property
  • Make renovations or repairs or add to a building

All applications (forms, drawings and related documents) shall be submitted electronically in PDF format by email or by using the Town's secure sharefile.

Please refer to our Electronic Submission Requirement Document.

Permit Application Checklists are available on our Building Services page.

It is always a good idea to talk to the Building Services Staff before you apply. We will be pleased to answer any questions and confirm whether you will need any other permits.

Building Services Staff will review your building permit application to confirm that the proposed work complies with the Building Code and other applicable laws set out in the Ontario Building Code, such as:

  • Zoning By-law
  • Conservation Authority Regulated Area (GSCA or NVCA)
  • Ministry of Transportation Ontario (MTO)
  • Site Plan Approval

Building permit applications for a simple alteration or addition can be processed quickly, but more complex proposals may take longer.

The Ontario Building Code requires that we review a COMPLETE building permit application within a certain timeframe where the application meets the criteria set out in the Code.

For example, the timeframe on a complete building permit application for a house is 10 business days.

For a more complex building, such as a hospital, the timeframe is 30 business days.

Within this timeframe, Building Services must either issue the permit or refuse it with full reasons for denial – If the building permit application is deemed complete. To be issued a permit, the proposed construction must comply with the Ontario Building Code and with the applicable laws set out in the Ontario 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 Ontario Building Code, a permit will not be issued until the zoning change or minor variance has been obtained, or the proposed construction complies with the Ontario Building Code.

Site Plan Control: If your property is covered by a site plan control by-law, you will not be issued a building permit until the plans and drawings have been approved by the Town. Please see the Planning Departments requirements for clarification on minor variances and site plan control.

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 municipality for an inspection when the project is at the stages of construction set out in the Building Code. The municipal building official is required to carry out the inspection within two working days of being notified.

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 municipality about any changes to the proposed construction, which will also have to be approved by the municipality

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 municipality can take enforcement action, such as issuing orders authorized under the Building Code Act, 1992.

Commencing January 1, 2012 residential houses must meet additional completion requirements before occupancy of a house can be permitted. These new requirements found in Article of Division C of the Ontario Building Code will culminate in the issuance of an Occupancy Permit.

*Note: Houses are residential dwelling units in a detached, semi-detached or townhouse form where no unit is above another unit, each unit has its own exit facility and has no accommodation for tourists.

For more information, please contact Building Services or see Document on right side of page.

When the total amount due is $2000 or less we can accept payment by Visa or MasterCard; please phone in your card information for processing. You may also send in a cheque by regular mail or courier, payable to Town of The Blue Mountains,

32 Mill Street PO Box 310
Thornbury Ontario N0H 2P0

or in person at the Building Service Counter, we can accept Visa, MasterCard, cheque, debit or cash.

When the amount due is over $2000 we accept payment by cheque, payable to Town of The Blue Mountains, which may be sent regular mail or courier to the address noted ABOVE, or in person we can accept cheque or debit. 


Building Inspections
519-599-3131 x296

Building Services
519-599-3131 x239

By-law Enforcement
519-599-3131 x249

Chief Building Official
519-599-3131 x261

Zoning Coordinator
519-599-3131 x290