Is a building demolition permit required in your municipality?

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Are you planning to demolish all or part of an existing building? Because this project involves several different tasks and can present many risks, there are certain steps that you will need to follow.

One of these steps, which is essential for compliance, is to obtain a demolition permit from your municipal administration.

In the following sections, our building demolition specialists share information about the steps involved in obtaining a demolition permit from the appropriate authorities.

Demolishing a residential or commercial building without a demolition permit is illegal

According to the current law in most of Quebec, it is strictly forbidden to proceed with the demolition of a building without having first obtained a demolition permit or certificate of authorization. Moreover, offenders may even have to rebuild buildings demolished without authorization.

Before giving the green light to a demolition project (home demolition, garage demolition, demolition after a disaster, etc.), an application for a demolition permit must be filed and may be subject to a decision by various public agencies.

For example, the decision to authorize or not the demolition of a building may be made by the Comité d’étude des demandes de démolition, an urban planning committee or by the Director of Urban Planning and Business Services in Montreal.

It is important to find out who you should apply to.


How to apply for a demolition permit

In most communities, applying for a demolition permit is done in a similar manner.

You must first fill out a demolition permit application form from your municipality (downloadable from most Quebec municipality websites). You then have to send this form along with the other required documents, which will vary according to the municipality.

The following are examples of documents or information that may be requested when filing your demolition permit application:

  • Photographs of the building’s facades and its surroundings
  • Number and size of occupancies in the building
  • If there are residential tenants, provide the measures planned to relocate them
  • If the building is vacant, specify when it was vacated
  • Reasons for requesting demolition
  • Preliminary program for reuse of cleared land including plans required to verify compliance with regulations
  • Schedule of demolition and reconstruction work, if applicable

You should also be aware that a complete demolition application may also require a utility service disconnection permit.

Conditions for issuing a demolition permit

When considering your application for a demolition permit, the relevant authorities may base their decision on several elements, the most important of which are:

  • The current condition of the building
  • Deterioration of the architectural appearance
  • Restoration costs
  • Objections received
  • Housing needs and relocation issues where the building in question contains multiple units
  • The proposed redevelopment project

Fees associated with a demolition permit application

When you apply for a demolition permit, you may be asked to pay a fee to review and analyze the file.

Some boroughs or municipalities may charge you additional amounts:

  • Deposit as security for any damage to sidewalks or curbs, public facilities and urban furniture
  • Fees for building a curb cut
  • Sewer walling and water service disconnection charges

As for the cost of the demolition permit, it will vary depending on the city or municipality, but generally ranges from $50 to $200.

Naturally, you are required to pay all of these fees if you want your application to be processed.

Processing time for a demolition permit application

The nature of the demolition permit application will determine how long it takes to process. That said, it generally takes from 1 to 6 months.

How long is a demolition permit valid for?

Regulations may vary in your community, but the average demolition permit is valid for 6 months.


Get your demolition permit more easily with our support

In short, without a demolition permit or certificate of authorization, you cannot demolish your property.

If the process of obtaining a demolition permit seems complicated, our demolition company in Montréal can help you understand it better. To discuss demolition with our experts at Excavation Chanthier, feel free to contact our team. Our expertise and experience are recognized on the North Shore, the South Shore and in Montreal.

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