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Notice

Development & Engineering Services » Building and Engineering Development

Frequently Asked Questions

Building Permits

Do I need a permit?

See Kamloops Building By-law Division 1, section 104 list when a permit is and isn't required.

What does a permit cost?

The permit application fee is based on the type of application. The actual building permit fee is based on the value of construction. See Building By-law No. 11-80 - Appendix "A"

How long does it take to get a permit?

As only completed building permit applications are accepted, our target is to process:

  • New single and two family dwelling building permit applications within two weeks.
  • Tenant improvement permit applications within 3-4 weeks.
  • Smaller commercial permit applications without a development permit or off-site works and services 3-4 weeks.
Large commercial permits, including development permits and/or off-site works and services, vary from one project to the next; a pre-application meeting with our Planning, Engineering, Fire & Rescue, and Building representatives can be arranged by calling (250) 828-3554. During this meeting, the processing time for the permit can be estimated.

How long is a permit active?

See Kamloops Building By-law Division 6, section614.

Why do I have to have my approved plans on site?

The approved building plans, along with the building permit, form an important element of the building permit documents. The plans, when processed and approved, have often been amended to reflect the requirements of City of Kamloops' By-laws. It is, therefore, important that the approved plans are available to the Building Official on site when he conducts his/her inspection.

City of Kamloops Building By-law also requires the approved plans to be on site until the inspection is approved. You are asked to have the approved plans on site before the Building Official arrives for his/her inspection. The Building Official will not perform the inspection unless the approved plans are on site.

It is our policy to assess the re-inspection fee if work is not ready for inspection more than once. This policy will be extended to the availability of plans on the site. A re-inspection fee will be assessed, which will be paid before the inspection will be carried out.


Residential

How do I request an inspection?

You can request an inspection 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by calling the inspection line at 250-828-3300. The following information is required, your address, permit number and the type of inspection you wish to have.

When is a geotechnical engineer required?

In certain areas of the city a Geotechnical Engineer is required by covenants placed against the property. Please check your Certificate of Title and covenants to see if this applies to you. Also at the time of inspection the inspector may request a Geotechnical Engineer if the inspector feels that the site conditions, soil types, contours or drainage require special foundation design.

When are Development Cost Charge collected?

Development cost charges shall be paid in full prior to issuance of a building permit. See the DCC By-law for more information.

Hot tubs and Pools

Are permits required for hot tubs?

By definition in Building By-law 11-80, hot tubs are pools, as they capable of being filled with water to a depth greater than 600mm (2 ft). Therefore all of the conditions in division eight- swimming pools apply to hot tubs.

Pool requirements

Division eight in Building By-law 11-80 lists all the requirements for a pool permit.

Wood stoves

How do I get my woodstove inspected?

The Building Inspection Division inspects wood burning appliances for conformance to the BC Building Code. The installation must meet the CSA standard for the "Installation Code for Solid Fuel Appliances and Equipment" and the Manufacturers Installation Instruction.

You can arrange for an inspection by obtaining a Solid Fuel appliance permit at the City of Kamloops Development Engineering Services Department (105 Seymour Street). The permit fee is $50 and an inspection can be arranged at time of payment; the inspector can come to your house as soon as the next day. On the inspection day, you may wish to call the area Building Inspector prior to 9:30 a.m. to arrange the inspection time.

How far does my woodstove have to be from the wall?

Clearances are regulated by CAN/CSA-B365, Installation Code for Solid-Fuel-Burning Appliances and Equipment. Appliances are tested and certified by CSA, or Underwriters Laboratory of Canada. A label showing the distances from combustible materials of which the appliance was tested is usually attached to the appliance, most often on the back.

The appliance must be installed in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications on the label. It is possible to install brick, ceramic, or sheet metal shielding on your walls or ceiling and reduce the required clearance in accordance with the CSA Standard.

What if my stove doesn't have a label?

We only accept certified appliances. Consult your insurance underwriter for non-certified appliance approvals.

How is the clearance measured?

Clearance is measured from the wall surface. If a shield is installed to protect a wall that is considered to be combustible, the clearance is still measured from the wall.

Where is the non-combustible pad under the appliance required?

The pad under the stove is required to protect the floor from embers when you open the door. The pad must extend 18 inches from the appliance at the loading side and 8 inches on the other sides according to the CSA Installation Standard.

Can I use my existing chimney?

A solid-fuel-burning appliance must be connected to either a masonry chimney conforming to the BC Building Code or a factory-built chimney conforming to ULC standard S629. In many cases, the existing chimney (masonry or metal) may not conform to current standards or manufacturers' appliance requirements. Therefore, it would require review by a qualified mason/installer prior to considering installation of a solid-fuel-burning appliance.

Retaining Walls

Retaining walls greater than 1.2 M

A registered professional shall undertake the design and conduct field reviews of the construction of a retaining structure greater than 1.2 m (4 ft.) in height. Sealed copies of the design and plan certification and field reviews by means of letters of assurance in the form of Schedule B and C-B as referred to in Section 2.6 of Part 2 of the Building Code shall be submitted to the building official.

Garden sheds and accessory buildings

Garden Sheds

Accessory buildings in residential zones which do not exceed 10 mē (108 sq. ft.) in building area, may be placed or constructed. A siting permit is required to ensure that the building is sited in accordance with the City of Kamloops Zoning By-law No. 5-1-2001 as amended from time to time and any other applicable enactment. An inspection to confirm the location, once built is required.

Accessory Buildings

No permit shall be issued for the construction of an accessory building or structure on any site, unless the principal building to which the accessory building or structure is an accessory, has been constructed, or will be constructed simultaneously with said accessory building or structure. The building must also meet all the Building By-Law requirements for what your property is zoned for.


Commercial

Alterations and tenant improvements

Do I need a building permit for a commercial alteration?

Yes.

When do I require an architect?

The BC Building Code specifies that where the building area exceeds 600 m², or three storeys in height, or contains an assembly (restaurant, theatre, gym, club, church) or institutional (hospital, care facility) occupancy, the Building Code requires supervision by a registered professional architect or engineer.

When is Public Health approval required?

Drawings submitted for a building permit must be first approved by Public Health when they include a public swimming pool or hot tub (including apartment buildings or care facilities), food store, bakery, food processing, water bottling, daycare for more than ten, a group home for more than seven, a community care facility, or a slaughter house.

The Interior Health Authority's inspectors can be reached at (250) 851-7340 or Fax (250) 851 7341.

When is a geotechnical report required?

The Community Charter states that "a Building Official may require an engineering report when construction is proposed on land that may be subject to flood, mud flows, debris torrents, erosion, landslip, rock falls, and subsidence or avalanche". In Kamloops, we most often encounter a risk of subsidence due to silt bluff and risk of landslip on steep sites.

The report will identify hazards, provide recommendations to address the site conditions, and certify that "the land is safe for the use intended".

The City will rely on the report when making decisions regarding development of the land and the report will be registered on the title of the property with a covenant to advise any future purchasers of the potential risks and the remediation that has taken place.

When are Development Cost Charge collected?

Development cost charges shall be paid in full prior to issuance of a building permit. See the DCC By-law for more information

What types of projects are exempt from Development Cost Charges?

See the DCC By-law for more information.


Demolition or Moving Buildings

Do I need a permit to demolish a building?

A separate demolition permit is required to demolish a building unless you already have an active building permit for reconstruction that includes the demolition work.

What is required for a demolition permit?

An application from the building owner or his/her agent, a site plan and a Demolition Sign-off Application for all utilities on that property. A security is to be provided in a form satisfactory to the Building Inspector to ensure that the site of the demolition will be left in a safe, neat condition, free from debris or dust, and compliant with neighbourhood properties. The amount of security shall be equal to the estimated cost of the site restoration and shall be acceptable to the Building Inspector. Permit fees shall be in accordance with the City of Kamloops Building By-law No. 11-80 - Division 11 - Relocation of a Building or Structure

What do I do with the sewer and water connections when I demolish a building?

Every person making application for a permit to demolish a building shall, as part of their application, provide the Building Inspector with satisfactory evidence that:
No unsafe condition will be created or permitted and all utility services to the building have been disconnected and all such disconnections have been approved by the appropriate authority.

Contact
Building Inspection Division
105 Seymour Street
Kamloops, BC V2C 2C6
ph 250-828-3554
fax 250-828-3848
email building@kamloops.ca

Permits outside City limits, call the TNRD - ph 250-377-8673

Note: All correspondence is entered into our system and will be directed accordingly. The City of Kamloops will endeavor to contact you within two business days. Thank you.