Building Permits

City of Nelson Building Inspectors deal primarily with the regulation and inspection of new construction and renovations, alterations, additions, and changes in occupancy of existing buildings. Building inspectors administer the Building Bylaw, the Sign Bylaw, and the British Columbia Building Code.


If you are proposing to construct any of the activities mentioned below, fill out a Building Permit Application (PDF) and include the appropriate fee and necessary attachments detailed on the required checklist.


Submitting Applications

Submit the application to the Department of Development Services and Engineering on the second floor of City Hall. PDF applications may be emailed. Hard copies of applications will be accepted 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Building permit fees vary with the cost of the development. Please contact Development Services to clarify these costs.

Development Permit

Please note that a Development Permit may be required for the above activities if your property is within a Development Permit Area designated by the Official Community Plan. If your building is non-conforming, a Development Variance application may be required. Please contact Staff if you need assistance in determining development permit requirements.

Building Permit Required

A building permit is required for:

  • Additions to existing buildings or mobile homes
  • Construction of any new building under 10 square metres that poses a risk or hazard
  • Construction of any retaining wall over 1.2 metres (4 feet)
  • Construction of decks and new roofs over decks
  • Construction of new masonry chimneys
  • Construction of a temporary building
  • Construction, structural alteration or change in classification of use in a commercial, industrial or public use building
  • Construction, structural alterations or repairs to exterior decks above ground level
  • Demolition or relocation of an existing building
  • Installation of a fire alarm system
  • Installation of new or changed insulation / vapour barrier in or on existing walls
  • Installation of a sign, awning, canopy or marquee.
  • Installation of a solarium kit
  • Installation of wood burning appliances
  • Locating a mobile home within city boundaries
  • Renovations and alterations to a building
  • Renovations that create a new bedroom, a new suite or enclose an exterior deck
  • Replacement of structural components of a roof
  • Construction of any new building over 10 square metres (108 square feet)

Building Permit Not Required

A building permit is not required for work such as:

  • Exterior finish repair or replacement such as stuccoing or siding
  • Fences (fence height must comply with city zoning bylaws where applicable)
  • Kitchen cupboards
  • Landscaping
  • Painting
  • Roofing, gutters or drain pipes

Contaminated Sites Legislation: Site Disclosure Statement

The Site Disclosure Statement form is a provincial requirement under environmental contamination legislation. The form can be downloaded here (note: the form may not open within your browser; you may have to download it and open with Adobe Acrobat or similar software).

Not all applications will require a site disclosure statement. It will only apply to projects where soil disturbance is likely and for properties where Schedule 2 land uses or activities have occurred. For more information, visit the Ministry of Environment's website.