Building Permits & Inspections
Building permits (including plumbing permits) are required before you:
- build, demolish, repair or alter a building or structure, including carports, decks and pools
- change the occupancy of an existing building or make interior renovations
- make changes to the exit from an existing building
- make additions or changes to the plumbing, furnaces, fire alarm or fire sprinkler system
Inspections are part of the permitting process, to ensure buildings meet current structural, health, security and fire protection safety standards.
For more information, review the Building and Plumbing Bylaw (Bylaw No. 3710) or contact the Building Division (contact information below).
Development Cost Charges
Under Section 559 of the Local Government Act, a municipality can establish development cost charges (DCCs), which are charges levied on development to assist in funding the cost of upgrading or providing infrastructure services and acquiring and developing parkland needed to support new development. DCCs can be collected to help pay for roads, drainage, water and sanitary infrastructure, as well as parkland acquisition and development.
Why get a building permit?
- It’s required. If you undertake work without a permit, you might be required to tear it all down and start all over with proper permits.
- To ensure you meet BC Building Code requirements for fire safety, structural support, soil and foundation strength, energy efficiency, plumbing, electrical, water conservation, trip-and-fall prevention, etc.
- To ensure all buildings and structures, renovations, alterations, additions, decks, mezzanines, retaining walls, accessory buildings, swimming pools, carports etc. comply with required setbacks from your property line, height, floor area and other regulations of the Building and Plumbing Bylaw (Bylaw No. 3710).
- To enable your commercial tenants to get business licences. Tenant premises must comply with the City’s regulations and BC Building Code before receiving a licence.
- To ensure your contractor is doing the work you are paying for, and help you avoid unscrupulous contractors or shortcuts in their work.
- To maintain value: buyers will avoid purchasing buildings with unauthorized construction.
Building Permits & Inspections
Communicating with an inspector in advance greatly reduces the chance of problems arising during an inspection.
Building and Plumbing Inspectors are available to receive phone calls and answer questions at the Building Division counter from Monday to Friday, 8:30-9:30 am and 3-3:45 pm.
For confirmation of an inspection or to speak to an inspector, call 604.927-5444 between 8:30-9:30 am on the day of the inspection.
How to book an inspection
Book online: Save time and paper!
You can book your inspection up to 10 days in advance, and cancel or change it up to midnight the day before the inspection. You may request a morning or afternoon inspection (subject to inspector availability).
When you book online, you save paper and can access inspection reports and information 24/7 from either a desktop computer or mobile device on the go.
How to book online:
- Have the following information on hand:
- The secure, confidential personal access code that you provided to the City when applying for a building permit.
- The building permit number located on the top right hand side of the permit.
- Address of the property, including unit number if applicable.
- Type of inspection required (e.g. footing, framing, rough-in plumbing).
- Register or sign in to MyPortCoquitlam(see the guide on the login page for first-time users) and complete the form.
If you do not have your permit and access code, contact the Building division at firstname.lastname@example.org or 604.927.5444.
For now, inspection requests can also be made via the 24-hour inspection request line at 604.927.5445 (leave a message with the building permit number, address and type of inspection) or in person at the Building Division counter. Requests received before 3 pm will be scheduled for the next business day.
Stages when inspections are required
Inspections should take place at every stage of the building process. Depending on what you are building, inspections for the following may need to be carried out:
- Forms and excavation inspection
- Drain tile and Damp proofing
- Storm, sanitary and water services ” “Plumbing
- Slab poly inspection
- Bathtubs, showers, traps
- Frame, chimney and duct inspection” “Insulation inspection
- Final building inspection
- Fire sprinklers
Common problems found by inspectors
- Improper truss installation
- Improper cutting, notching and drilling of framing members
- Incorrect form work for foundations” “Improper lot grading
- Lack of continuous bearing to foundations
- Use of unapproved materials or fixtures
- Covering work without inspection and testing” “Improper use of fittings
- Improper bedding of sanitary and storm sewer
- Lack of frost protection for pipes
Electrical and Gas Inspections
If your project requires electrical or gas inspections, you will be directed to schedule these with the BC Safety Authority.
More Building and Developing Information
Location and Mailing Address
City Hall Annex (Next to City Hall, above Bank of Montreal)
#200 – 2564 Shaughnessy Street
Port Coquitlam BC
Business Hours: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday (excluding statutory holidays)