Building projects may be required to obtain a permit, check zoning, location, easement, or coverage requirements before building commences.
Building permits are required for most types of construction, whether it is a new home, a commercial building, or the renovation or expansion of an existing property.
The City of Prince George improves public safety by ensuring buildings comply with City bylaws and British Columbia Building and Plumbing Codes. The City issues building, plumbing, and sign permits and provides advice on building-related matters to Council, other City divisions, and the public.
When is a building permit needed?
Permits WILL be required for the following projects:
- Construction of a new home.
- Construction of a new building.
- Construction of a new accessory building (detached garage, shed, etc.).
- Construction of a new sun deck.
- Renovations, repairs, or additions to an existing building.
- Completion of a previously unfinished area in an existing building.
- Enclosure of a porch or roof over a sun deck.
- Enclosure of a carport.
- Building a retaining wall that is more than 1.2 metres (four feet) in height.
- Relocation or demolition of an existing building.
When is a building Permit not needed?
Permits will NOT be required for the following projects:
- Installing new fences, patios at grade, planters, or landscaping.
- Building a retaining wall that is less than 1.2 metres (four feet) in height.
- Completing any painting, decorating, or general maintenance.
- Conducting minor repairs which uses the same or similar materials and does not affect any structural or mechanical/plumbing work.
What if I'm not sure if a permit is needed?
Contact the Building Inspection division at Development Services for assistance:
1100 Patricia Boulevard
Prince George, BC V2L 3V9
Building Permit Applications
Send completed application forms to:
Residential Building Projects
Commercial Building Projects
A Site Disclosure Statement form may be required with a building permit application package if the proposed property has any past or present Schedule 2 uses.
If you are unsure if a Site Disclosure Statement form is required for your project, check the BC Government's Site Identification guidelines to access the form and to find a complete list of Schedule 2 uses.
The BC Energy Step Code is a performance standard designed to drive steady increases in energy efficiency in new construction. The Step Code provides an incremental approach to achieving the provincial Clean BC goal of 80 per cent improved energy-efficiency in new construction by 2032.
In December 2022, the BC Building Code will require that all new builds must be 20 per cent more energy efficient than the base building code requirements today, which is Step 3 for Part 9 buildings, and Step 2 for Part 3 buildings.
Local governments have the authority to require builders to meet one or more steps prior to the mandatory implementation of the BC Energy Step Code in December 2022. The advantage of this is to prepare builders and designers for the upcoming provincial requirement of Step 3 for Part 9 buildings, and Step 2 for Part 3 buildings.
Effective September 1, 2022, all Part 3 and Part 9 buildings must comply with Step 1. A building constructed to Step 1 is intended to have as good or better energy performance as a reference building constructed to the BCBC’s minimum prescriptive requirements for energy efficiency. As such, Step 1 of the BC Energy Step Code is intended to help builders familiar with traditional prescriptive codes make a smooth transition to building to performance codes that are focused on outcomes.
STEPS TO ACHIEVE COMPLIANCE WITH BC ENERGY STEP CODE
Energy Advisor provides a standardized “pre-built” report that is to be submitted at time of building permit application. Builder and energy advisor stay in communication throughout the build. Energy model is updated with any changes to the design (e.g. window specification updates, mechanical system exchange, insulation level change, etc).
- Builder works with an energy advisor from the design phase to create a model (energy efficiency target) for the new build.
Optional but advised: mid-construction blower door test conducted by energy advisor to find any air leaks and allow repair BEFORE seal-up stage. Final inspection and air-tightness test conducted by energy advisor. Energy advisor submits a standardized “as-built” report to the AHJ following construction and prior to final inspection or occupancy, to verify airtightness and energy performance.Occupancy permit can be issued if minimum required energy efficiency is achieved, as verified by the energy advisor in the “as-built” report.
BC ENERGY STEP CODE ADDITIONAL RESOURCES
You can learn more about the BC Energy Step Code by reviewing the following resources and/or by contacting one of our Building Officials:
BC Energy Step Code is the main Provincial Step Code information site.
Building A Legacy North is an initiative of CHBA Northern BC in collaboration with Community Energy Association, supporting Step Code implementation, training and information sharing in northern BC. Find cold climate case studies, recorded webinars, an animated Step Code information video, upcoming events and more.
Better Homes BC houses an up to date list of qualified energy advisors who can help you with your project as well as information on available incentives for new builds and retrofits.
A plumbing permit may not be required in certain cases. The following projects can be undertaken
without a plumbing permit:
- Removing or replacing a faucet, valve, service water heater, or other similar fixture where no change to the piping is needed.
- Clearing a stoppage or blockage.
Send completed application forms to:
When do I need a plumbing permit?
A permit is
required for the following projects:
- Installing new plumbing fixtures.
- Installing a new water meter.
- Changing, renovating, adding, or altering piping in existing buildings.
- Connecting to municipal services.
- Installing on-site servicing works.
NOTE: When adding three (3) or more fixtures and when making substantial changes to the plumbing system, a water meter is required.
How do I apply for a plumbing permit?
The Plumbing Permit must signed by a qualified plumber. Applicants are recommended to print out Plumbing Permit form, fill it, have it signed by a plumber, and bring the form to Development Services in City Hall.
Send completed application forms to:
Review the Designated Zoning
Review the designated zoning for the property to ensure the intended use is permitted and check the zone's development regulations (e.g. setbacks, site coverage, height, etc.). Refer to the City of Prince George Zoning Bylaw for more information or contact the Development Services at 250-561-7611.
Check Location for Depth and Services Required
BC One Call to check the location and depth of services required for the following:
- City utilities
- BC Hydro
- Telus telephone/Internet communications, etc.
Shaw subscribers may contact
Dig Shaw for more information.
Contact Planning and Development
Contact Planning and Development (Engineering Services) for additional information on municipal services, new service connections, and access to culverts and roads.
Check for Easements or Right-of-Ways
Check for easements or right-of-ways on the property. This can be determined by reviewing the property's title. For more information and further assistance, contact the Development Services at 250-561-7611 or the Land Titles Office.
Residential Construction Resources
Building Permit Statistics
The following information reports provide a monthly summary of issued building permits. They also provide a comparison of the issued building permits over a three year timeframe.