Condo renovations will revitalize and personalize your living space. Whether it is remodelling the bathroom or kitchen, or giving your living or bedroom area a facelift, renovations add more value to your condo while meeting your personal needs and style.
However, unlike renovating a house, there is more involved when it comes to renovating your condo. Before you begin any remodelling project on your condominium, it is important to understand the rules and regulations of condo renovations in Toronto first. Failure to understand or comply with the rules could result in fines or even legal action. In this blog, we will cover everything you need to know to when asking can you renovate your condo.
Involve the Condo Corporation
All condominiums have condo corporations, or a registered legal body of representatives. Every condo owner in a building or unit has shares in the corporation but not everyone makes decisions. The condo corporation has an elected Board of Directors who act on behalf of all the tenants. The condo corp. is a volunteer group made up of condo owners. The corporation responsible for overseeing all of the building’s operations, making decisions and policies on behalf of all the tenants, and enforcing the area bylaws.
If you are planning to renovate your condo in Toronto, you must get the corporation involved before starting any work. Because other people live in the complex, any condo remodelling you do to your unit could affect other tenants. Condo corporations have guidelines and policies in place regarding the type of work that can be done in each unit. They will also have other policies in place regarding noise levels, hours of work, parking.. deposits, permits, renovation plans, and insurance. These policies are made to adhere to the regional bylaws, protect the building from damage, and provide a fair and respectful living space for everyone who lives in the complex.
If you fail to involve the condo corporation, you could violate their policies and be fined or forced to either amend or remove your condo remodel upgrades to meet the corporation and bylaw codes. To avoid any or all of these headaches and unwanted expenses, discuss your plans with the condominium corporation before you begin renovating a condo. When talking to the board members, present a clear and detailed condo renovating plan so the corporation will know exactly what you will be doing to your suite.
Any Toronto condo renovation work is noisy and for some, very stressful. Listening to construction crews hammer, drill, saw, and move large items for an extended period and can disrupt sleep schedules and other daily routines. To protect all residents, Toronto noise bylaws state that you cannot perform construction between 7:00 pm to 7:00 am Monday to Friday and 7:00 pm to 9:00 am Saturday and Sunday. These rules apply to everyone, including condominium owners.
Your condo corporation might have their own rules in place regarding times during the day that you can make noise during your condo renovations so the disruption to the other tenants is minimal. Before you begin your renovating a condo, you will have to find out the hours and days that you can work on your renovations. Failure to comply with the rules in place could result in stern warnings and fines. Working during the designated hours will protect you from complaints so you can get the desired renovations done.
Parking and Elevator Booking
Elevator usage and parking are important when renovating your condo. Contractors often have larger vehicles and supplies that need to be brought or discarded so they need parking spaces that are close to the entrance. If they have a lot of materials to bring in and out of your suite, they will also need to have regular access to the elevator without worry that the elevator will close or move to other floors while they are loading and unloading their equipment.
However, because elevators and parking stalls are common areas used by all condo owners, condo corporations establish policies for booking and reserving parking spots and elevators so you can access the spaces without too much disruption to your crews or other tenants. Prebooking your elevator and parking to coincide with your contractor’s schedule will save you a lot of time and stress. It will also help avoid hassles or complaints from other tenants.
Material Transport and Disposal
Most condo corporations have strict rules in place for transporting and disposing materials during condo remodels. The rules are in place to keep yourself and others safe and the building damage free. They ensure that any construction materials brought into or removed from your suite do not damage the common areas or cause potential risk to others.
When booking your elevator and parking times with the condo corporation for renovating your condo, find out what your building rules and regulations are regarding material transportation and disposal so you do not run into any hassles or delays when your contractors arrive.
If chemicals, paint, or other toxic materials are used for renovating your condo, disposal regulations are not only covered by the condo corporation policies, but by the Toronto bylaws as well. When doing condo renovations, it is the responsibility of you and your contractor to make sure all materials are disposed of properly.
Limitation of Condo Renovation
Condominium corporations can put in place policies on limitations of Toronto condo renovations or policies on what is and is not allowed when remodelling your home. These can include removing walls or partitions, changing electrical or plumbing systems, installing different flooring, increasing, or decreasing window sizes and styles, and changing layout plans. Some condo corps. have regulations in place on hiring professional contractors to perform certain renovations.
The limitations are put in place to ensure the condo remodel does not affect other areas, disrupt other tenants, or diminish the value of the condo and complex. Before starting to renovate a condo, discuss your plans with the board to make sure your changes are within guidelines of the corporation’s condo remodel limitations.
Not all plumbing and electrical renovations in your condo can be done because other units or areas of the building are connected to the same lines that run in your unit. If your plumbing and electrical work affects other units or areas, it is highly unlikely that you will be able to make the changes. If your condo remodelling work requires changes to your electrical or plumbing systems, you will need to get the condo corporation’s approval first before you can start renovating your condo.
Condominiums have many common areas throughout that are shared by all tenants. Because there is a risk of damage occurring to one or more of these areas during condo remodel projects, condo corporations often require additional insurance or deposits before you begin any work. The insurance will protect you should something go wrong while the deposit is paid to the corporation to cover any potential damage that may occur during your condo renovations in Toronto. Deposits are usually refundable and are returned once the work in completed without causing damage. Before starting any work, make sure you have the required insurance and check with your condominium board to make sure any deposits are paid.
Understanding the Rules of Post-Pandemic Condo Renovations
Renovating your condo during the COVID-19 pandemic has created additional challenges. Since the pandemic first started in early 2020, the restrictions around condo remodelling work have changed. As the case counts continue to increase and decrease, government restrictions are continually changing to meet the safety and health needs of the public.
Before beginning any condo renovations in Toronto, you will need to ask can you renovate your condo during the current health protocols Your condo corporation will have the current guidelines and protocols on what is and what is not allowed during the pandemic. You and your contractors will need to follow the current COVID-19 public health protocols when planning your condo renovations.
Flexibility is important during these times as the rules and guidelines for in-home condo remodelling work can change with little to no warning by government officials. Following current guidelines will keep everyone safe.
Your condo is your home and sanctuary so it is only natural that you will want to renovate your condo to meet your needs and repair any outdated or damaged areas of your suite. However, because condominium complexes are shared by multiple tenants, condo corporations have fair and respectful guidelines in place to protect everyone from work done in another unit.
Understanding the rules and regulations of condo renovation work in Toronto will save you a lot of time, money, and headaches.
At Moose Condo Reno, we are experts in all areas of renovating a condo. As your one-stop-shop in condo remodelling work, we have built a solid reputation as one of Toronto’s leading and most trusted condo renovation companies. We guarantee the highest quality craftsmanship by expert professionals at competitive rates. Contact us today for your free consultation.