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NEC Exemptions: Exterior Repairs and Maintenance

Some exterior repair and maintenance activities on lands within the Niagara Escarpment Plan (NEP) are exempt from the Developmental Permit Application process as long as they meet certain criteria. Landowners within the NEP are encouraged to use the following Exemption Self Assessment to determine if their development is exempt and approval from NEC is not needed.

For more information, read the R.R.O. 1990, Regulation 828, which lists the classes of development that are exempt from the requirement of obtaining a Development Permit.

Self Assessment: Is your exterior repair or maintenance activity exempt?

Exterior repairs or maintenance to a single dwelling are exempt if, upon completing construction, the following condition is met:

  1. The repair or maintenance of the exterior of a building or structure does not change the footprint, height or use of the building or structure. Activities include new siding, shingles or other roofing materials, windows, eaves, finishes, and foundational work.

This exemption does not include the following:
  • Additions to the dwelling.
  • Change in roof pitch or height.
Please note the following:
  • Your self evaluation is your confirmation that the development meets the exemption criteria. It is the responsibility of the property owner to ensure that all requirements are met for the exemption. Proceeding with development where a permit would be required may result in compliance actions.
If you have any questions about the above rules, please contact NEC staff by emailing

5. The following classes of development, if listed as permitted uses under the land use policies established in the Niagara Escarpment Plan and not in conflict with a development permit issued under the Act, are exempt from the requirement of obtaining a development permit:

4.1 The maintenance or repair of the exterior of a building or structure that does not change the use of the building or structure.

(Excerpt from R.R.O. 1990, Regulation 828)

Do you meet the exemption criteria?

If you meet all criteria, you do not need a Development Permit to proceed.

  • A letter confirming your exemption will not be issued by the Niagara Escarpment Commission.
  • You can use this page in discussions with your local municipality or conservation authority if permits are needed from them. 
  • An exemption does not relieve you of any other permission (e.g., Ontario Building Code, Endangered Species Act, Ontario Regulation 172/06 established under the Conservation Authorities Act, etc.).

If you fail to meet all criteria, a Development Permit is required.

  • To initiate a Development Permit Application log into the NEC Information System Portal. Use the NEC Information System User Guide for more information.

If you have questions about the application process, contact NEC directly by emailing

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