Can a Handyman pull permits for homeowner?

Question Icon
Posted by: from Mississauga
3/8/2016 at 9:44:19 PM

Can a handyman (not licensed contractor) pull out permits on behalf of the home owner? Or only a contractor is able to?

Also, what type of work would need permits/drawings - stair refinish? Basement, bathroom, kitchen? Is there a guideline?


User Icon
Date/Time3/9/2016 at 8:31:04 AM

Hi Gabby,

Yes a handyman/woman can pull permits for your project if they have a letter from you (the homeowner) authorizing them to act as an agent on your behalf.

However, in order to obtain a permit you will need to have drawings done and stamped with a BCIN or Building Code Identification Number.

The work you mentioned you want to have done will require a permit from the City of Mississauga and will have to go through both a code examination and zoning.

You can find a copy of the City of Mississauga Residential Building Permit Guide for your reference at:

If you have trouble opening it, you can find it through the City of Mississauga website.

Best of luck

Jason Irving

Cedarfalls Building Consultants Limited

User Icon
James from TCM Enterprises in New Market
Date/Time3/9/2016 at 9:12:53 AM

Hi Gabby,

It sounds like you are doing a major renovation. I would think before hiring a Handyman, you are asking for trouble. The City Of Mississauga requires a license for Contractors as well as the City of Toronto. Remember you may think you are saving money, but it will cost you in the long run. Use licensed trades.


Total General Contracting Service.

User Icon
Date/Time3/9/2016 at 8:03:32 PM

Hi Gabby,

Anyone can pull out permits on behalf of the home owner as long as you will provide him with a written authorization. However as long as you are looking to get a permit from the city so you have to hire a certified BCIN or engineer for drawings and you will have to use a certified trades to perform the work after. For more information about the permit and the process, you could visit the city of Mississauga (building permit section) website.

User Icon
Date/Time3/10/2016 at 10:22:03 AM


In the city of Mississauga a "handyman" actually must carry a city's municipal licence. With that said, if your handyman isn't licenced, he shouldn't be doing the work or pulling permits.

Anyone can apply for permits on your behalf but unless they have what is called a BCIN (Building Code Identification Number), or are a registered professional engineer or architect, then you as the homeowner actually do have to get involved in the application. The previously mentioned professionals can fill out what is called a "Schedule A" on your behalf. Anyone else applying for you will need you to fill this document out. Essentially it is a waver stating who is taking final responsibility incase there is a catastrophe such as a house collapse or damage to neighbours or city property.

My suggestion is that if your project is big enough to need a permit then work with a professional and not a general "handyman".


Sam L.

Keystone Ridge Developments

User Icon
Robert from ElecTriLight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time3/11/2016 at 7:28:33 PM

They cannot apply for any electrical permits. That can only be done by a Licensed Electrical Contractor or the home-owner (if they wish to try and wire their own place, providing they apply for the inspection), but to be very Frank I don't recommend it as the code is updated all the time with amendments that even us Contractors can sometimes have a hard time keeping up with. And in all fairness, they don't check the circuitry, loads, and sometimes are not as thorough as one would expect them to be for the price they charge.

User Icon
Date/Time3/14/2016 at 2:05:21 PM

Hi Gabby,

I'm sure you really trust your Handyman. He's probably the very best guy to service and maintain your property. However, this is a job for your local Design Builder. Don't end up on "Holmes on Homes". Leave this work to the professionals, you'll be happy you did.

Good luck with your project.

Search the TrustedPros directory and discover the best contractors in your area.

Find your home service pro
Great renovations start with a great contractor.

Since 2004, TrustedPros has been helping homeowners find the right contractor for their home improvements and repairs.

Post Your Project

Within hours you'll be comparing offers from top-rated professionals. It's free to post and you're under no obligation to hire.

Trustedpros Inc. does not warrant the accuracy, completeness, safety, legality or usefulness of any Content, or Whether Content is Current and up-to-date, and TrustedPros Inc. Shall have no liability whatsoever with respect to your use or reliance upon any content or for content being removed or otherwise ceasing to be available. Please refer to the terms and conditions of use of this websites for more details.

Get quotes from top-rated contractors