The goal of the Building Inspection Division is to ensure the health, safety and protection of persons and property by confirming that buildings and their systems generally conform to relevant bylaws, the BC Building Code and other applicable standards.
For a listing of the forms available, click on the 'Publications and Forms' link in the menu to the left.
A Building Permit is required when you:
- construct a new building.
- add to an existing building.
- change the occupancy of an existing building, i.e. from office to retail.
- make interior renovations that may impact the direction of travel to an exit.
- repair a building envelope.
- demolish or move a building.
- enclose your carport or change your garage to living space.
- add or relocate plumbing, fire alarm or fire sprinklers.
- pave a parking area where a storm drainage system is required.
- finish existing basement.
- install a swimming pool.
- locate or add to a mobile home.
- locate a temporary building.
- alteration of a building or part of a building
- reconstruction of a building or part of a building
NOTE: A detached accessory building less than 10 m2 (107 sq ft) and 4.5 m (14 ft 9 in) in height and built on properties containing a single family dwelling is exempt from requiring a building permit, but must still meet setback requirements specified in the Zoning Bylaw.
Building Inspection Services and Permits
The Building Inspection Division provides general information on the Building and Sign bylaws, the BC Building Code and other relevant standards. We can provide practical information on construction, plumbing, woodstove installation and other systems in buildings. We also have Information Guidelines and Frequently Asked Questions available online.
The Building Inspection Division reviews building plans, specifications and associated documents (engineers' reports, truss plans, surveys etc.) to confirm compliance with the BC Building Code, Building Bylaw 2003 No. 5693 and other applicable standards. We issue building permits, and collect applicable securities and Development Cost Charges. Building and Plumbing Inspectors visit the site at scheduled points during construction to ensure that construction conforms to the approved plans and conditions of the building permit, plus the Building Code.
The Building Inspection Division reviews plans for signs to confirm compliance with the Sign Bylaw 1987 No. 2850. We issue sign permits and Building Inspectors visit the site at scheduled points to ensure construction conforms to approved plans and conditions of the sign permit.
Access Permits (driveway)
The Building Inspection Division coordinates the issuance of access permits. The Municipal Works Inspector visits the site to ensure construction conforms to approved plans and conditions of the access permit.
Servicing Permits (connections and on-site work)
The Building Inspection Division reviews plans for on-site servicing and issues servicing permits. The Plumbing Inspector visits the site at scheduled points to ensure construction conforms to approved plans and conditions of the servicing permit. We also issue servicing permits to connect to City services such as water, sanitary sewer and storm sewer.
Coordination with Other City Divisions and Outside Authorities
The Building Inspection Division coordinates with other City Divisions and Departments, and outside authorities when processing a building permit.
Building Inspection Section
Service and Resource Centre
411 Dunsmuir Street
Nanaimo BC V9R 0E4