Building Permits

Plans for any new structure, addition or renovation must be approved. A Building Permit is your formal permission to start construction or demolition.

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.

Permit forms and guides

Permit Application Forms:

Need some more information on building-related projects? Here are some handy guides we've created just for you.


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 available for pick up.

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, 2019. 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: $3.43

Urban-area Services Charges: $2.90

Total Charges: $6.33 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 us using the contact information at the bottom of the page.

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.


Please be advised that as of April 1, 2016, Termite Inspections will no longer be conducted by Township Building Officials.  Please contact a qualified independent company for any Termite Inspections/Treatments. 

Some informational material regarding Termites such as our updated Termite Brochure, will remain on our website; however, the termite management area maps are no longer available.

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.

Contact Us

Melissa Davies
Permit Clerk – Building Division
1 MacDonald Square, Elora, ON, N0B 1S0
T.: 519.846.9691 x329
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