Planning a renovation in Westmount
Undertaking renovations in Westmount may seem relatively complicated. The homes in Westmount are older, they have special needs and the municipality of Westmount requires that their regulations be respected.
How to plan your renovation project in Westmount
Any good renovation project begins with good planning, and this is even more true when it comes to renovations in Westmount. We begin by determining and making a detailed list of everything we want to include in the renovation project. From this list, it will be possible to determine everything that will affect the heritage and architectural components. If the renovation project includes one of these components, the municipality of Westmount will require approval of the renovation project by the Westmount CCU (Urban Planning Advisory Committee) to approve your renovation project. In addition, the municipality of Westmount now requires an asbestos test in most cases in order to protect you and the workers who will carry out the renovation project in your home. It is important to check this before the work begins.
Architectural Heritage in Westmount
This refers to any exterior modifications, such as walls, doors and windows, roofing and landscaping. The Municipality of Westmount will obligate you to keep some key elements characteristic of Westmount’s architecture. Some minor changes may be permitted without going to the CCU, but you must make sure that your project is in compliance with the Westmount Architectural Heritage Regulations. No major external changes will be permitted without the approval of the Westmount CCU. Preparing this type of project can seem long and arduous, but by working with the right contractor for your renovation project, you will be guided through the process making it simple and consistent with the architectural and regulatory heritage of the Town of Westmount.
Application for Westmount Permit
Not all renovations require a permit in Westmount. The majority of external work will require you to apply for a permit from the Municipality of Westmount. These include doors and windows, roofing, landscaping and fencing, for example. Consult the Westmount licensing office to see if your project will require an application for a permit. For work inside your home, work related to the structure of the building will require a permit from the municipality of Westmount like the refinishing of a staircase and removal of load-bearing walls, for example. For all renovation work, even inside the home, you will need to consult the Westmount regulations to find out if you need to apply for a permit or not. Your contractor can accompany you if you feel overwhelmed with the process. He will want to work according to the regulations, to avoid a stop-work order by the municipality of Westmount. Indeed, the municipality of Westmount could interrupt any renovation work done without the appropriate renovation permit.
Consult the Municipality of Westmount prior to the renovation
By consulting the Town of Westmount, before undertaking the renovation, as they can advise you on the guidelines for your renovation project in order to facilitate the acceptance of the permit, or approval at the CCU, should it be required as it is for a major renovation project. These tips will be useful to avoid lengthening the process and losing valuable time in the course of the normal timeframe of a renovation project.
Once you have established your needs and budget, you will then have to prepare preliminary plans, which will be required for the Westmount municipality’s license application, or to file a revision consultation with the Westmount CCU. It is very important to note what documents the CCU needs for each type of renovation project and to assemble these documents appropriately before applying for a permit.
ESPÉ can assist you in your process to make your renovation project a success, and within the Westmount by-laws.