Many homeowners may believe building permits are only required by their municipality if they’re altering the structural framework of their home and that replacing windows would not fall under that category. This is incorrect.

As windows are a critical component of your home’s safety, performance and comfort, every Canadian city and township requires that building permits and inspections be included as part of the home improvement process.

Residential building codes vary by area, but window permits and inspections are necessary to document that all minimum regulations are being complied with such as:

  • Natural light and ventilation
  • Emergency egress requirements
  • Weather barrier to prevent moisture intrusion, mold growth and pest infestation
  • Energy conservation
  • Safety glass

Review the following guide to obtain information on the permit process for your community:

Calgary New Window Installation & Expansions Permit

The City of Calgary Land Use Bylaw rules require that a building permit to be issued for the proposed installation of new windows (new opening) or window enlargements to a residence. All work must be approved prior to the start of construction and comply with the Alberta Building Code.

  1. 1. Review and Complete the Home Improvement Application.
  2. 2. Prepare drawings showing proposed work to be performed.
    • Basement or bedroom windows must meet Egress Window Guidelines to ensure safe passage in the event of an emergency.
    • Elevation drawings must be provided for any window changes that face a side property line. There are restrictions to the percentage of windows allowed and the distance to the property line. In these cases, a development permit may also be required.
  3. 3. Submit the application online or in person at the Planning Services Centre along with fee payment.
  4. 4. Schedule the rough inspection after proposed windows are installed and then a final inspection once the job is completed including interior drywall work.

All questions regarding the Land Use Bylaw can be directed to the Planning Services Call Centre at 1-403-268-5311 from Monday to Friday: 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Edmonton New Window Installation & Expansions Permit

The City of Edmonton suggests applying for your building permit well in advance of your new window installation or expansion project as it can take a longer time to process during the busy construction season, which typically runs from May to September.

Recently, energy-efficiency requirements have increased for the installation of new windows and the expansion of windows. Building permits and inspections are required to verify compliance with the new regulations.

  1. 1. Review Province of Alberta Permit Regulation of the Safety Codes Act. Acquiring a building permit for structuarl alterations sucha as the installation of new windows or window expansion will ensure your project meets all safety standards.
  2. 2. Prepare building plans (to scale) showing the proposed window installation or expansion.
  3. 3. Apply for the building permit. Permits are issued by Municipal District.
    • Key services included with permit issuance include plans examination, follow-up of problem areas or unsafe conditions, technical advice and a final status report at the end of the project.
  4. 4. Contact Municipal Affairs to schedule an inspection at rough construction and again upon completion of the project.

For additional information about codes and permits call at 1-866-421-6929 or email at safety.services@gov.ab.ca

Winnipeg New Window Installation & Expansions Permit

While the City of Winnipeg does not require a building permit for the replacement of windows and doors of the same size, it is still necessary to comply with all building code and safety requirements undergoing structural changes. New window openings and window expansions are considered alterations to the existing structure and do require a building permit application be submitted by the homeowner, regardless of who is doing the work.

  1. 1. Review the National Building Codes for construction work in Manitoba.
  2. 2. Review the Building Permit Guide for specific information required prior to application. Specific information related to the civic address, owner’s name, type of work being done, and scale drawings with engineer’s stamp are some of the information needed.
  3. 3. Applications for building permits are issued by the Authority Having Jurisdiction. Apply to the proper building department for projects that do not exceed $5,000 and submit proper fees.
  4. 4. Contact the Office of Fire Commissioner – Codes and Standards Section of the Manitoba Government to schedule inspections related to the building permits that were issued.

If you have additional permit questions send them to ppd-permit@winnipeg.ca or call the Permits Office at 1-204-986-5140

Regina New Window Installation & Expansions Permit

The City of Regina requires a building permit only in case you apply structural changes such as new openings and expansion of the openable area. Building permit will be also required for Heritage structures. If you’re altering a Heritage property, follow the instructions below:

  1. 1. Review and complete the Heritage Alteration permit submission package. A Residential Permit Fee Calculation Form is also required.
  2. 2. Application packages must be submitted in person to Development Services at Regina City Hall. Construction cannot begin until the building permit is issued or a surcharge will be assessed.
  3. 3. Inspections must be scheduled with the Regina Building Department by phone and passed before the next phase of work is started.

Contact Service Regina at 1-306-777-7000 for more information.

Saskatoon New Window Installation & Expansions Permit

The City of Saskatoon does not require a building permit when replacing windows in the same-size existing openings. However, the installation of new windows or expanded sizes do require a permit.

  1. 1. Review National Building Code requirements for glazed opening restrictions for a wall and in relation to the property line.
  2. 2. Complete and submit the City of Saskatoon Building and Development Permit application online along with all the required documentation.
  3. 3. After issuance of building permit and installation of new windows, schedule a building inspection online or by calling the City of Saskatoon Building Department.

For all residential building permit inquiries please call 1-306-975-3236. For building standards call 1-306-975-2645 or email at building.standards@saskatoon.ca

Whether you’re replacing your windows or adding some new ones, it’s important to follow the building ordinances of your municipality. In addition to overseeing the safety of the installation work and product, the inspection process will help reinforce the need for a tight building envelope that will save you money through improved energy efficiency.
While you, as the homeowner, will be required to apply for building permits even if you hire a professional contractor to do the work, let the window experts at Ecoline Windows visit your home and provide a free consultation. Our team of specialists will help you through the regulatory process so you can get your project done quickly and easily.