Online Building Permit Application

Welcome to the City of Nanaimo's Online Building Permit Application page. Here you'll learn about how to use our online building permit application system. This one application process works for both Residential and Commercial Building Permit Applications of all types.

TIP: If this is your first online application, or you think you may need additional support, please plan to start this process between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday (excluding stat holidays). Please allow an hour for this application process, especially if you are on a slower connection and/or you have many files to attach to your application. If you run into any trouble, please contact us at:

Contact Us

Development Services General Inquiries 250-755-4429
8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Building Permit Application Process

Important!  Be aware that if your application is not 100% complete, your application may not hold its spot and may be bumped to the bottom of the line. You may even be required to make a new application. We are working hard to process the applications received; we ask that you do your part and make a complete application, which will help reduce processing times.

If you are the owner of a property needing a residential or commercial building permit, please follow these instructions to start your online building permit application. If you are an agent representing an owner or are an owner needing an agent to represent you, please complete the Appointment of Agent form FIRST. (Once completed and signed, attach the Appointment of Agent document to the building permit application.)

  1. Go to the link for the online building permit application. (This will open in a new window/tab.)  You can leave this page open for your reference.
  2. Fill in the FULL LEGAL NAME and valid email address for the Applicant (owner or agent of owner) in the first available spots. If the Applicant is an agent of the owner, please complete the Appointment of Agent form FIRST and attach it to the application.
  3. If there are additional owners on the property, fill in the FULL LEGAL NAME and valid email address of each owner (or agents) below the Applicant in order (2 -> 3 -> 4).
    Building Permit Application applicant and owner form animation
  4. Click the "Begin Signing" button at the bottom or top of the page.
  5. As the Applicant and first owner/agent, you will then be taken to the application to fill the fields and sign as the first owner/agent. IMPORTANT: All red fields are required for the submission of your application; grey fields are optional but may help expedite your application. Fill them to the best of your ability.
  6. Digitally sign the document as yourself (being the owner or agent).
  7. Upload any required documents to your application. IMPORTANT: DO NOT DRAG AND DROP FILES. Select files one at a time using the Upload a File button. You can upload any number of files to your application as long as none are over 25 MB in size each. Should you have any documents over 25 MB in size each or are having difficulty uploading your documents, please check the box on the form beside the Application Attachments button. We will then contact you to make alternative arrangements for the delivery of your files.
  8. Click "Finish" to send the application to any other signers (or to us if you are the only signer).
  9. Each additional owner/agent will receive an email invitation to fill and sign the application in the order you set above (2 -> 3 -> 4). IMPORTANT: These additional owners/agents will not receive an email until you have filled and signed your portions of the application. Please allow up to 10 minutes after you have submitted your part of the application for each invitation email to arrive in the additional owners' or agents' email inboxes. If owners/agents have not received their invitations to sign the application within this time-frame, have them check their email junk folder or contact us for more help.
  10. Once all owners/agents have signed the form, the City of Nanaimo and each signer will receive a copy of the completed application. There is no further action needed on your part. Thank you for your application!

NOTE: There is no need to forward any documents outside this process. You can attach plans and other documents to the application, and all signers (owners or agents) should be indicated on the initial form. If you have documents larger than 25 MB each to attach to your application, please contact us to make arrangements for their delivery - we have a secure cloud solution we will have to set up for each case.

Once signed and complete, please allow 5-10 business days to receive and process your application. If you or any signers have questions about filling any part of this form, please contact us:

Contact Us

Building Inspections Section 250-755-4429

Last updated: May 24, 2023

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