Building a Garage
But Can I Build A Garage?
The house is just right - updated kitchen, nice bedrooms and closets, great location – everything you need except….. WE NEED A GARAGE! Can we build one?
The answer… Maybe!
Who Has A Say
Every municipality will have their own by-laws and requirements, but there are other government bodies that may also have a say in the construction of a garage, workshop or large shed depending on the proposed location or road access required.
For example, in the Town of Georgina, you will require a building permit for construction of a garage or a workshop or garden shed if it is to:
- Contain plumbing
- Be larger than 107 sq ft (10 sq metres)
- Be attached to another structure with a combined area larger than 107 sq ft (10 sq metres)
It would also subject to the following:
- Septic system Approvals (locates)
- Engineering (Site Alteration i.e. grading)
- Operations (Town road access)
Additionally, you may need approval from the following as well:
- Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA), http://www.lsrca.on.ca/;
- The Region of York re Regional Road Access, http://www.york.ca/
- Ministry of Environment
- Ministry of Transportation re: Provincial Highway access
Sounds like a lot of approvals to get - right?
Fortunately not all of the above may have an interest in your new garage but it is better safe than sorry. As well, the Town will likely be able to advise you if might require further approvals.
The first step in Georgina (and likely other municipalities) is to email the Town to enquire if it is even possible to erect your garage or workshop where you would like to. There will be minimum setbacks from the property lines, maximum lot coverage and, if in a rural property, the location of the septic tank and tile bed to be considered.
Once passed that step and obtained approvals from any other jurisdictions such as the LSRCA , you will need to submit an application for a permit and other documents such as the site plan, construction drawings or design, roof framing details, etc. Currently the cost of the permit is $300. More information on these structures can be found at https://www.georgina.ca/living-here/building-and-renovating/building-permits/garages-and-sheds.
…..How about a Deck or a Pool?
If your deck is less than 24 inches high, not on any kind of slope and doesn’t have a roof, feel free to let your inner DIY’er out. Otherwise, much of the process is the same and may require similar approvals as a garage. Check out the details at https://www.georgina.ca/living-here/building-and-renovating/building-permits/decks-and-porches.
The fee for the permit is currently $300 flat rate is your deck is greater than 107 sq feet (with or without a roof and no walls) or $1.28 per sq foot if less than 108 sq ft.
Pools are a little trickier with more requirements as in addition to the site plan and design approvals that the other projects require, a Pool Enclosure Permit will be required. This is to ensure that fencing around the pool will be compliant with the regulations for safety sake!
While the fees vary for the site alteration permit that will be required for the installation of the pool, the cost of the permit for the fencing around the pool are:
- for an In-Ground pool $150.00
- for and Above-Ground$100.00
- for an On-Ground (Seasonal temporary)$50.00
More information on installing a pool in Georgina can be found at https://www.georgina.ca/living-here/building-and-renovating/swimming-pool-enclosures.
If you are using a local contractor for the build, it is likely that they will already be familiar with the process and can prepare and submit all the documents needed on your behalf.
Just remember that whether it is a workshop, shed, garage, pool, deck , you may require a permit and as time consuming as it is to obtain all the approvals, it will take more time either stop building or to take it down and rebuild it should the Town order that because it was built without a permit.
Also, keep all your approvals! Whether you keep them in paper format or electronic it doesn’t matter but keep them!
Should at some point you decide you have to sell, being able to provide the inspection reports and approvals to a potential buyer is invaluable.
***Please be aware that this information is only a general summary of what will be required should you wish to build any of the above and not to be relied upon solely. I strongly recommend that everyone thinking of these additions to their home and property contact the Town and other authorities listed before proceeding with any construction
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