Building Permits

Building Permit Fee Increase - Public Meeting

Council will hold a public meeting on May 25, at 6 p.m. to consider a proposed amendment to By-Law Number 2011-087 as amended by By-Law 2016-12, being a by-law respecting construction, demolition and change of use permits and inspections for the administration and enforcement of the Building Code Act pursuant to Section 7 of the Building Code Act.
Public Meeting Notice

Ontario Building Code Stair Changes

Changes to stair requirements under the Ontario Building Code will be effective to all permit applications deemed complete after December 31, 2021.  The list of Ontario Building Code Stair Changes can be found here

What is a Building Permit?

A Building Permit is a license that grants legal permission to start construction, renovation or the demolition of a building project. Building Permits ensure that the proposed construction meets with standards set out in the Ontario Building Code. No matter what the specific project may be, the enforcement of codes, by-laws and standards is carried out to protect public health and safety.

Do I need a permit?

A permit is required when you:

  • Construct a new residential dwelling
  • Construct an addition to an existing building, irrespective of size
  • Attach a garage, carport, shed or other roof structure of any size
  • Construct an accessory building (sheds, detached garages, etc.) over 10 m2 (107 ft2)
  • Renovate
  • Finish the basement of a house
  • Create an accessory apartment in an existing dwelling
  • Demolish any building greater than 10 m2 (107 ft2)
  • Add, remove or alter a structural wall or column
  • Change the use of a building
  • Relocate a building
  • Replace an exterior wall or cladding
  • Install new plumbing or backflow prevention devices
  • Add or relocate plumbing fixtures
  • Install an underground sprinkler system connected to building plumbing
  • Add any new building that contains plumbing, irrespective of size
  • Construct decks of any shape, size or height
  • Build a concrete porch
  • Add or renovate a solarium and/or sunroom
  • Add a dormer
  • Install or change a swimming pool and its required fencing
  • Install any wood-burning appliance (fireplaces or woodstoves)
  • Convert a fireplace from gas to wood or solid fuel burning
  • Install solar panels or a solar hot water system
  • Recycle grey water to reduce water use
  • Re-insulate walls, ceilings or floors
  • Install a new furnace utilizing a new fuel source
  • Remove a load bearing wall, column, lintel or beam
  • Install a new window or door if you are increasing the width of the existing opening
  • Construct a retaining wall that is greater than three feet and three inches in height
  • Install a new private septic system, replacement tank or repairs to an existing system
  • Include site servicing (water or sewer lines) for all building types
  • Erect a tent or group of tents that are more than 60 m2 (646 ft2) in an aggregate ground area, or attached to a building, or constructed within 3 m (9' 10") of any structure
  • Alterations or changes of use to industrial, commercial, institutional and multi-residential construction
  • Install an exterior sign

Please contact our office if your project is not listed here and we will be happy to walk you through the process.

A permit is not required when you:

  • Structures less than 108 ft2 measured from the outside face of walls (that do not contain plumbing)
  • Gas fireplace
  • Fences not enclosing a swimming pool (but must still comply with zoning regulations)
  • Water softener installations
  • Damp-proofing basements
  • Painting, wall papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, countertops, and similar finish work
  • Door and window replacements (within the existing opening, where no structural members are changed)
  • Installing new shingles on existing roof
  • Replacing a plumbing fixture (i.e. toilet, bathtub or sink) with a new fixture in the same location
  • Replacing a furnace or adding air conditioning units or a heat pump
  • Kitchen or bathroom cupboards
  • Retaining walls less than 1 m in height
  • Sidewalks, planters and landscaping
  • Garden pergolas and gazebos that do not have a solid roof

Please contact our office if your project is not listed here and we will be happy to walk you through the process.

Apply for a permit

Building permits can be applied for by emailing your application and documents, including drawings, to: (attachment limit is 10MB total). Submissions larger than 10MB can be uploaded through 2big4email, or contact us for assistance.

Payment will be required to be made in person at the Township Civic Centre, 1 MacDonald Square, lower level. Alternatively, a cheque can be sent by mail payable to the Township of Centre Wellington. The permit application will not be considered complete until payment has been made.

Please refer the the permit forms and guides and permit requirements tabs below for information on:

  • application requirements
  • drawing requirements
  • designer requirements

Permit forms and guides

Permit Application Forms:
Permit Guides & Information:

Permit requirements

Application Requirements

The following electronic documents are required for permit submission. All electronic documents and drawings must be in PDF format.  

  • application form
  • one set of drawings (see permit guides and below for drawing requirements)
  • site plan for entire property
  • schedule 1 - design information form
  • energy efficiency design summary (EEDS) form
  • sewage system design (if applicable)
  • schedule 2 - sewage system installer information form(if applicable)
  • any other forms that pertain to your project
Drawing Requirements

The following drawings and information may be required to accompany application for permits:

  • site plan/lot grading plan
  • foundation plan
  • floor plans/framing plans
  • roof plans
  • building elevations
  • sections and details
  • truss layout drawings (if applicable)
  • pre-engineered floor joist layout drawings (if applicable)

All drawings must be fully dimensioned and drawn to scale. They must include all sizes and types of construction materials to be used and their respective locations, finishes to all walls, ceilings an floors, and all existing and proposed fire separations. 

Please refer to our permit guides for more information.

Designer Requirements

All submitted documents must be prepared by either the owner, or prepared and reviewed by a qualified designer, architect, professional engineer or a combination. Some drawings must be designed by a professional engineer when the design falls outside of the prescriptive requirements of the Building Code. 

The Building Code requires qualified, registered designers, who review and take responsibility for design activities, to include the following information on documents submitted for permit:

  • The name and building code identification number (BCIN) of the registered firm.
  • A statement that the qualified person has reviewed and taken responsibility for the design activities.
  • The name and BCIN of the qualified person.
  • The signature of the qualified person.


All permit fees are calculated based on Schedule "A" By-Law No. 2016-12.


Please be advised that, in accordance with requirements of the Township of Centre Wellington Building By-Law #2005 – 044, permit fees will be due and payable upon submission of application.

Fees calculated on initial application may require adjustment prior to the issuance of the Building Permit.  You will be advised of any adjustment or additional fees owing on notification that the Building Permit is ready for issuance.

Development charges

Development charges are one-time fees charged by the Township on new properties to help offset the cost of specified services as outlined in the Development Charges Act.

The following development charges are effective January 1, 2022. More information can be found here.



Single-Detached Dwelling & Semi-Detached Dwelling

Apartments with 2 or more bedrooms

Apartments – Bachelor and 1 bedroom

Other multiples

 Special Care/Special Dwelling

Township Wide Fees






Urban Area Service Fees













Township-wide Charges: $5.26

Urban-area Services Charges: $3.94

Total Charges: $9.20 Per square foot of gross floor area 

Development charges are controlled through the Township's Development Charges By-Law and are based on our Development Charges background study and update.

Wellington County Development Charges

Construction may be subject to Wellington County development charges.


Every permit issued by the Township of Centre Wellington has a list of required inspections. It is the property owner's responsibility to ensure inspection requests are booked a minimum of 24 hours before the required inspection time.

Please contact building staff to book an inspection by emailing, or calling 519-846-9691 ext 907. You will need to make reference to the permit number and property address when requesting your inspection.

Please note the Township does not review or inspect electrical work. Contact the Electrical Safety Authority at 1-877-421-2228 for electrical permits.

Call before you dig

If you are planning to dig, build or excavate, it is important you locate all of your utility lines first. In fact, under Ontario regulations, it is the law.

To have municipal infrastructure located please contact Ontario One Call at 1-800-400-2255 to register your locate request.

Call at least one week before you plan to dig to be sure you get the locate information by the time you need it.

Monthly permit information

Permit Activity Report for last month's building permit information.


Click here to visit our Rodent & Pest Prevention & Control web page.

Need More Information?
For more information, please drop in to see us at the Civic Centre at 1 MacDonald Square in Elora (Lower Level), Monday-Friday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm, or give us a call at 519.846.9691.ext 907.

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