Spring is here and you know what that means, right? – Renovation season is in full swing! Every year the province see’s hundreds of thousands of residential renovation jobs. Believe it or not Construction is one of Quebec’s main economic drivers! Most of the time in residential renovations we see small projects such as flooring, kitchens, bathrooms etc, but what if you are planning a major renovation such as the extension of your house? Or the construction of a permanent 4 season veranda? Well here are some steps you should take to make sure it is done correctly. This will ensure that it is cost effective and quick!
Step 1 – Verification at the municipal level
When starting major renovations, your first step should always be to verify with your municipality what exactly is allowed, and what they need to give you the green light (permit) to start your major renovations. Some cities are much more strict and detailed, while other municipalities are a little more lenient when it comes to major renovations but this should not be taken for granted as they all have rules and regulations that need to be followed. To do this you can take a meeting at your municipality headquarters with the urbanism // permit department which can be done online, and discuss with them what you plan on doing so that they can share with you everything you need.
Step 2 – Budget and Prepare
Once you have your municipal guidelines in place and you know exactly what can and cannot be done with your renovation project, you now begin the fun part! The next step should always be creating a budget. Renovations (especially the major type) tend to get out of hand quickly, so before meeting with any contractors you should set yourself a comfortable budget that allows you to limit your spending and be realistic with the costs you will be dealing with.
Once you have a clear budget for your project, it is now time to meet with at least 3 different contractors to evaluate the cost and timeline of your project! I say 3 because it is always a good idea to get a cost from three different professionals to see how they evaluate the tasks at hand and the cost differences between each. Now that your contractors are chosen and work seems to be lined up, you can prepare yourself for what is to come and make sure that all your ducks are in a row regarding municipal regulations, by-laws, architectural plans and whatever else you may need to get your project started.
Step 3 – Submit for Permits & Start Having fun!
Now that all systems are a go for your project, you must remember to submit a permit at your municipality and get the actual documentation needed. This permit is to be kept forever as it can be used as proof should the city by-laws ever change or if you decided to sell and your broker or a buyer ask for proof. After about 4-6 weeks, the city should grant your permit and you are now on your way to start your major renovation project!
Major renovations should be dealt with by professionals such as RBQ Licensed contractors, Architects and engineers if need be to make sure that all is done right and that a track record can be kept for future purposes (sale or proof of work done). Make sure to look into your cities website to see if there are any grants available for major renovations in your neighbourhood!