TAKING YOUR DOWNSTAIRS UP A NOTCH: Permits for Basement Renovations

Posted on: 2015-05-20


If you are renovating or developing your basement in Edmonton, you may require a wide variety of permits. Read on for an explanation of each permit type that might be required.



A development permit is required if your basement renovation includes:

  • Changes to the exterior walls or size of your house,
  • Changes to the usage of the basement (ie: basement suite) and/or
  • Renovations needed to start a business in your basement.


A building permit is required if your basement renovation includes:

  • New bedrooms or bathrooms,
  • Modifications or repairs to beams, columns or window and/or
  • $5,000 or more spent on the renovation.
  • Costs that contribute to the $5,000 threshold*:
  • Building materials,
  • Plumbing pipes and fixtures,
  • Electrical components and/or
  • Heating and ventilation materials.
  • *Furniture, flooring, décor or other finishing materials do not add to the threshold.

Building permits do not cover work done to plumbing, gas, electrical or heating and ventilation systems. The information below outlines the required mechanical permits for such labor.


Plumbing and Gas Permit

Any basement renovations and developments including plumbing or gas work must have approved mechanical permits before any work begins. Any modification to or replacement of drain lines or pipes in the ceiling or walls must be inspected before finishing work is completed. Replacing or updating your existing fixtures does not usually require a permit.

Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Permit

Most basement renovations involving HVAC ductwork usually do not require an HVAC permit. Generally, the only time a permit is needed is when installing several new ducts or when installing a new or auxiliary furnace.


All electrical work done during a renovation is subject to permit and review.

All of the above guidelines are based on information from the City of Edmonton website. Bylaws and regulations are subject to each municipality and/or neighborhood.

Our team needs to have the proper permits too; take a look at this list of permits and insurance that individuals working on your property should have.

If you have any questions or concerns, contact our experts at Parabola Development and we can customize a basement renovation plan for you. We ensure all work is done within the letter of the law and is held to the highest inspection standards.


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