What To Think About When Applying For A Secondary Unit Building Permit

Author: Civilcan Engineering Inc. | | Categories: Architectural Design , Engineer Drawings , Permit Drawings , Residential Building Permit

Here's what to think about when applying for a Secondary Unit Building Permit

Adding a secondary unit is a great way to provide independent living for a family member or make a little extra money to help pay off your mortgage. But, before you can build this extension, you will need to apply for a building permit. To help you through the complexities involved in completing the necessary legalities, here are five tips that you should keep in mind when applying for a secondary unit building permit.

Tip #1: Apply early
Apply for your building permit as soon as possible, and don’t wait for the weather to get better. Once your completed application is submitted, you will hear back within ten business days, letting you know if it is approved or not. Incomplete or improper applications could mean that your permit will be rejected or delayed.

Tip #2: Ensure your property is not located on a floodplain
If your property is near a water body, pond or river, check to make sure it is not located on a flood plain. In case you want to obtain finances, the lender will order a flood certification to determine if your property is on a floodplain. If it is, you will be required to pay flood insurance. If you don’t want to pay insurance, you must get the property removed from the floodplain before you build the new unit.

Tip #3: Think about the entrance location for your secondary unit
The entrance to the new unit must be on the ground floor unless building and fire codes dictate otherwise. No new doorway entrance can be added to the front wall, but an internal shared lobby with a common doorway entrance in the front wall is permitted. There are exceptions for entrances on corner lots. Make sure to keep all this in mind when planning the doorway to your secondary unit.

Tip #4: Go for more than just the minimums
Adding a secondary unit to your property gives you flexibility with your property, from having an extra guest bedroom to housing elderly family members. Every home and residential area is different, and you need to figure out a plan that works well for you. Ensure that you have a reasonable budget before committing to such a task. Remember, this is a big investment, and you do not want to skimp on planning or quality products as it might ruin the stability or appearance of the existing structure.

Tip #5: Follow the rules
Remember to follow the rules regarding secondary building units in your state. Your secondary unit must comply with local authorities and be a compatible fit with the neighborhood. Meet with your city before you spend much time or money on your project. That way, you can understand all the rules that will apply to your specific project. Adhering to the rules will help you go a long way, especially if you wish to sell the place.

For more tips on secondary unit construction, reach out to Civilcan Engineering Inc. Incorporated in 2011, we provide architectural, structural, and mechanical design and permit application services for residential and commercial building projects of various sizes and complexities. We offer a free project assessment and initial site visit to evaluate the project and guide you through the building permit application process for your project. Our services include new custom homes, home additions, and extensions, garages and carports, basement apartments and multi-units, basement entrance below grade, new side entrance, etc. We serve clients across Toronto, Mississauga, Hamilton, Oshawa, Markham, Vaughan, Brampton, and the surrounding areas. To learn more about the services we offer, please click here. To get in touch with us, please click here.