Building Permits


Building Inspectors are available for counter inquiries Mondays to Fridays, 8:30 to 10:00 am and 1:00 to 2:00 pm. 

District of Oak Bay is now accepting digital building permit applications. Payment of fees can also be managed over the phone, where you can arrange for payment with your credit card. 

If you are applying for a new application:

  • Please review all the content within the building permit application form and Building Permit Checklists (below)  to ensure you have a complete application. Contact or call (250)  598-2042 extension 7496 with any questions you may have regarding application submission.  Staff are monitoring the building email and telephone lines and will respond to you within 48 hours. 

  • Submit your complete electronic application, including your building permit plans and ALL supporting materials, including a Certificate of Title  (dated within 30 days of the date of the application) in PDF format to  Please note the civic address in the subject line of the email. 

  • Staff will contact you to confirm receipt of your application and advise you of the application fee.

  • Once a complete application is made, staff will review and process your application.

  • When your building permit is ready to be issued, the building permit will be emailed to you.  Full payment of fees is required prior to the building permit being issued.

For Building Inspections, please note that at this time, the Building Inspector will require that a physical distance of at least 2 metres (6 feet) is adhered to at all times between the Inspector and any other construction personnel or owners / residents at this time.

Stay up to date on development applications in the District

Visit the District's Development Application Tracker, which provides information on current development applications in Oak Bay.

Visit the Development Application Tracker webpage for user instructions.


The Building and Planning Department is available to provide assistance prior to building or making changes to a home or property. This section of the website contains information on obtaining building permits and inspections. Building and Zoning Bylaws can be found here.

  • Permits
  • How to Obtain a Permit
  • Arrange an Inspection
  • Uplands Building Permits
  • Access Information on Developments or Properties


Building permits are required for all new construction, temporary buildings and for alterations to existing construction.  Please review building requirements with Municipal staff before commencing a project. The cost of building permits depends on the nature and scope of the work being done.

The Building Permit Application and Plumbing Permit Application Forms are available here:

Building Permit Checklists

Additional Forms

Some examples of when a building permit is required:

  • Construction of a new building
  • Additions to existing buildings
  • Kitchen Renovation
  • Upgrading an existing building or changing its use
  • Creating new rooms or spaces within existing building
  • Finishing a basement
  • Demolishing a building or part of a building
  • Building a deck or gazebo
  • Installation of a hot tub
  • Construction of a swimming pool
  • Adding an accessory building, equipment room, shed, or detached garage more then 10m2
  • Building a retaining wall over 1.2 meters in height, or multiple walls
  • Constructing roads within a strata development
  • Restoration, maintenance or repair of building's structural components and systems
  • Restoration, maintenance or repair of significant fire and life-safety components and systems of the building.
  • Replacement of windows

Building permits are not required for:

  • Repairs less than $500 in value
  • Retaining walls under 1.2 m in height
  • Accessory building less than 10 m2 (Does not apply to the Uplands)

Note: Work that does not require a permit, must comply with Municipal Bylaws and the BC Building Code.

How to Obtain a Permit

The following are some of the basic procedural requirements:

  1. The permit must be obtained before commencing work on the project.
  2. To apply for a permit, information about the project in the form of construction plans and supporting documentation must be submitted to the municipality.   This  information is necessary to demonstrate that the proposed work will comply with all applicable Codes, Regulations, Bylaws and property encumbrances (e.g., rights-of-way, covenants, etc.).
  3. Permit forms can be obtained through Municipal Hall or as provided above.
  4. Pay application fee. Building Permit fees are based on the value of construction.
  5. Depending on the nature of the permit in question, various other charges and securities (Development Cost Charges, Damage Deposits, Tree Permits, etc.) may be collected at the time the permit fee balance is due.
  6. Periodically during the progress of permitted work,  and after  completion of work, an inspection must be carried out.

BC Energy Step Code

The BC Energy Step Code is in effect in Oak Bay.  This is a provincial standard that provides a consistent, tiered approach to achieving more energy efficient buildings.  The Step Code does not specify how you must construct a building, but it does identify how the steps must be met.  This is done with the help of an energy advisor.  Energy modelling and on site testing will demonstrate how the design and construction of the building will meet the Step Code requirements.

Effective January 1, 2020, building permit applications for new construction have to demonstrate compliance and be constructed to meet the following:

Building Type Description Required Step
Part 9 Residential Single Family Home, Duplex Step 3
Part 3 Residential Larger Multifamily Projects Step 2
Part 3 Commercial Commercial / Office Buildings Step 2

BC Energy Compliance Report - Pre Construction

BC Energy Compliance Report - As Built

BC Energy Step Code Builder Guide

Province of BC

BC Energy Step Code for Industry


Home Energy Navigator

The Home Energy Navigator program helps homeowners take the next step, regardless of where they’re in their retrofit journey, and aims to reduce barriers to completing a home energy retrofit. This new regional service provides participants with free support from local energy experts, including:  

  • Rebate navigation 
  • Virtual home energy consultation  
  • Quote reviews 
  • Customized retrofit roadmap 
  • And more! 

If you have questions regarding rebate requirements or need support with deciding which upgrades are right for your home, reviewing quotes or filling out your rebate applications, you’re not alone! To learn more, visit

The Home Energy Navigator Program is a free program created by the CRD and local government partners in the capital region and informed by industry experts, including numerous local contractors. It is being executed by City Green Solutions, a local non-profit with decades of experience helping homeowners save energy.   

Uplands Building Permits

Under the Uplands Regulations Bylaw, applications for building permits involving exterior work in the Uplands must be approved by the District of Oak Bay prior to the issuance of the permit. Special attention will be made to site and architectural design. View the Oak Bay Uplands Design Guidelines and Uplands Design Guidelines Review Form.

Access Information on Developments or Properties

Use the Authorized Agent's Letter Form to authorize an agent to access information on the following:

  • Building, Plumbing or Development Permits
  • For Engineering Permits (Driveways, Service Connections)
  • Viewing Property Plans
  • Obtaining copies of Property Plans

            1.  Payment for plans must be received prior to plans being scanned.  

            2.  Plans are sent offsite for scanning at the end of each week and are emailed to the agent when ready.