Renovations and Basement Developments

Are you renovating or developing unfinished or partially finished areas of your home? Find information about permits and inspections you'll need here.

What are the regulations?

Design considerations for basement developments

  • bedroom windows must meet egress:
    • easy to open
    • unobstructed
    • at least 540 square inches of openable space, with no dimension less than 15 inches (width or height).
    • 30 inch clearance in front of bedroom egress windows in a window well
  • the furnace room must be separated from the rest of the floor area, with a door 32 inches wide
  • continuous handrails are to be installed for all flights of stairs
  • stair rise to be consistent through the flight of stairs with no rise exceeding 7 7/8 inches
  • hard wired and interconnected smoke alarms are to be installed in every bedroom
  • hard wired and interconnected smoke alarm/carbon monoxide detectors are to be installed within 16 feet 5 inches of every bedroom and on each level
Do I need permits?

You will need a development permit if you are:

You will need a building permit if you are:

  • renovating your home,
  • finishing your basement for family use
  • adding, moving or removing any interior walls,
  • changing window sizes, or
  • replacing kitchen cupboards.

You don't need a permit to:

  • paint walls
  • replace flooring
  • replace counter tops
  • replace shingles or siding 

Explanation of Permits

Learn about the different criteria that we review before issuing a Development Permit and a Building Permit. 

Building Permit

A Building Permit is required to review the safety components of completing renovations or basement development, ensuring it is constructed correctly and is safe for you to use.

How long does it take to process?

Note: During building season (April 1 - October 31), processing times may take longer, due to the number of applications that are submitted during this time.

In most cases, it will take 7-10 business days to review and issue. The Building Permit cannot be issued until the Development Permit has been issued. 

What are the fees?

The fees have recently been updated, please refer to revised Schedule A for current fees:  Safety Codes Updated Fee Schedule April 2024 (pdf)

The Safety Codes Permit Bylaw 3551/2015 (pdf) will have information pertaining to a Building Permit for residential dwellings.

Development Permit

A Development Permit is required to ensure that the structure you are proposing to build on your property complies with the Land Use Bylaw in regards to placement, size and height. 

How long does it take to process?

Note: During building season (April 1 - October 31), processing times may take longer, due to the number of applications that are submitted during this time.

In most cases, it will take 5-7 business days for review and decision. Depending on the size or location of the proposed building, consultation with neighbouring landowners may be required. If this is the case for your build, the timeline for review is extended by approximately three weeks.

Also important to note, if your project requires a variance to regulations or is a discretionary use (redevelopment) in the Land Use Bylaw, there is a 21-day appeal period before the permit can be issued, if approved.

What are the fees?

Please refer to 'Schedule A' of the Development Permit Fee Bylaw to find the fees associated with the Development Permit.

Permit Application Process

Check out what is included with each step of the process, from preparing your documents to beginning construction.

Who can apply?

A homeowner or licensed contractor can submit permit applications. If you are not the owner of the property, you will need to include a Letter of Authorization (pdf) with the application package.

If you are a contractor requiring a City of Red Deer Business Licence, please visit our Licensing page before submitting your permit application.

Step 1: Prepare your documents

Before submitting your permit applications, you need to prepare all the plan documents and forms that are required for your submission. Review the respective requirements list and forms for each permit.

User Guides

These guides will help you prepare and save your required plan documents to submit during your application process.

Development Permit

Building Permit

Step 2: Submit your applications

How do I apply?

Building Permits and Development Permits

Building Permits and Development Permits can be submitted online using MyPermits. Please ensure you have all the documents and drawings you need for your project by following the requirement list and plan submission standards documents from Step 1: Prepare your documents. You will be required to upload these files to ProjectDox to complete your application. If the application is incomplete, the permit will be returned to you to submit the missing items.

  1. Visit MyPermits and complete a Building Permit application.
  2. You will receive an email to the address you specified as the applicant inviting you to access your project in ProjectDox for your permit application.
  3. Log in to ProjectDox with an existing account or with your temporary password provided in the email.
  4. Upload the plan documents you prepared for your application from the Upload & Submit task on your dashboard.

For assistance, refer to our ProjectDox Applicant Guide (pdf).

link to the MyPermits site


Step 3: Processing your applications

Once we receive your complete permit applications, the Development Officer and the Building Safety Codes Officer will conduct a review of the permits, ensuring the proposed development complies with the Zoning  Bylaw and the Safety Codes Act, respectively.

You will receive email notifications throughout the application process, including:

  • If we need more information;
  • When payment is required;
  • When the permit is issued.

Good to know

Did you know that some email servers will block City of Red Deer emails? These emails will often end up in your junk/spam mail folder. Please add as an allowable sender to make sure you are receiving our emails.

Step 4: Sub-trades permits

You will need additional permits to put in lights and outlets, heat and plumbing.

  • Electrical - for wiring outlets and lights or sub-panel
  • Heating - for heating devices, such as a wood stove (solid fuel appliance)
  • Gas - for gas appliances, such as a unit heater, radiant heater, furnace or a boiler
  • Plumbing - for floor drains, sinks, showers, wash stations, etc.

Who can apply?


The City of Red Deer allows homeowners to obtain permits; however, if you have no previous knowledge or experience with these installations, you should engage the services of a licensed contractor to apply for the required permits and complete the work.

There are a few exceptions:

  • Gas permits may only be obtained by a licensed gasfitter
  • Heating permits may only be obtained by a licensed heating contractor
  • Homeowners cannot obtain an Electrical Permit for the following work:
    • hot tubs or pools
    • main service or panel changes
    • duplex, townhouse or any unit with a shared wall
    • secondary suites
    • solar panels
    • rental properties
    • electrical car charging stations.


Contractors applying for permits require a valid City of Red Deer Business Licence. Please visit our Licensing page should you require a new or renewed licence prior to applying for your permit.

How do I apply?

Homeowners and contractors can apply online using MyPermits, or submit an application form via email to

link to the MyPermits site
Step 5: Site inspections

What inspections will I need?

The required inspections will be determined when the Safety Codes Officer reviews your application, and will be listed on the Safety Codes Building Permit when it is approved and issued.

If you've obtained any sub-trade permits, you may need two inspections during the course of the respective permit. 

  1. A rough-in inspection before concealing any work
  2. A final inspection once everything is complete

If you obtain multiple sub-trades permits, these inspections will apply to each permit type.

When can I schedule an inspection?

Once your Safety Codes Building Permit has been approved and issued, you will receive an email with instructions of how to schedule an inspection.

How do I know the outcome of my inspection(s)?

You will receive an email notification informing you of the outcome of each inspection.


Phone: 403-342-8190
In person: Main floor of City Hall, 4914 48 Avenue

City Hall is open between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday. Closed weekends and statutory holidays.