Is a permit required for a front porch?

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Posted by: from Hamilton
9/7/2022 at 3:19:01 PM

We recently had landscaping work done at our property. Our contractor indicated that a permit wasn't required for a new front porch as it was "not attached to the house". The porch is over the cold room. He has done previous work at our home, so we trusted his advice.

After reviewing the city's website, it's pretty clear that a permit should have been obtained.

The work has been completed but I'm concerned with the ramifications of following his advice.

Is there any course of action going forward?

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Richard in Edmonton
Date/Time9/7/2022 at 5:38:50 PM

It would be interesting to know how a front porch is not attached to the house? In Alberta certain kinds of minor projects can be done without a building permit however a porch would require both development approval and a building permit. The penalty for completing the work prior to obtaining a permit could be a doubling of permit fees; you could be asked to remove it if there are Building Code issues, or for aesthetics, or doesn't comply with development regulations.

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Emjay in Hamilton
Date/Time9/7/2022 at 8:02:38 PM

He said that because it was above the cold room and "not attached with rebar". It didn't sound right so we asked a few times but he was insistent.

He had worked on our backyard which required a lot of consultation and letters of permission with our local conservation authority, so it's not as if he was unaware of our desire for the work to be permitted as needed.

He later didn't get a gas locate for work near a meter so things deteriorated quite quickly. We're now reviewing all work. It's been quite frustrating.

Should we be self reporting to the city to seek out inspection of the porch? I understand that would come with fines/fees but given the trouble we encountered, I'm wondering if that's the correct path.

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Date/Time9/8/2022 at 4:51:09 AM

Anything over 10' 10' exterior requires a permit. My advice would be to call your local townships building department and be honest with them. They will most likely charge you the permit fee and send someone by to inspect the project. If there is any further work required. Please dont hesitate to reach out.

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Emjay in Hamilton
Date/Time9/8/2022 at 12:54:16 PM

Thank you, Richard and Jacob! I appreciate the time you took to provide a reply. I'll be taking your advice and reaching out to the city today to get this remedied.

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Date/Time9/8/2022 at 8:23:56 PM


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Richard in Edmonton
Date/Time9/9/2022 at 11:59:07 PM

An example of something that would typically not require a building permit is an accessory building (i.e. garden shed) measuring no more than 10 m2 (10' x 10'). In this case it is an addition. I expect there would also be some associated electrical which would also require a permit.

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