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Is it possible to get the construction plans for your house from the city?

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  • Jan 11th, 2020 9:40 am
[OP]
Deal Addict
Jun 27, 2015
1622 posts
207 upvotes
East York, ON

Is it possible to get the construction plans for your house from the city?

Hi guys

My house was built around 1960. I would like to get a copy of the construction plans if possible?
Is this something one can get from the city? (for free or paid service?

thanks
CC
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25 replies
Deal Fanatic
Jan 25, 2007
8821 posts
4494 upvotes
Paris
CuriousC wrote: Hi guys

My house was built around 1960. I would like to get a copy of the construction plans if possible?
Is this something one can get from the city? (for free or paid service?

thanks
CC
I asked in 2008ish for a house built in 2000 and they laughed at me so probably not.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Jun 27, 2015
1622 posts
207 upvotes
East York, ON
Really annoying issue. I am looking at a wall that is a bearing wall in the basement and nothing of what could be a bearing wall on the main floor (raised floor bungalow) seems to be a bearing wall, not at least judging by the thickness of the wall ... the building is one of those rectangular bungalows let say the form factor is 4:1 for the rectangle or rather 3:1, typical for the adjacent neighs of Toronto.
Someone told me that on the top floor nothing excepting the exterior walls is a bearing wall, the roof sits on the exterior walls practically
Pretty much like here
Image
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Deal Expert
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Feb 8, 2014
16633 posts
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You can ask, your city might. I would not count on it but you have nothing to lose but some time.
I suggest if that fails to enlist a structural engineer
In fact in Rand McNally they wear hats on their feet and hamburgers eat people
Deal Fanatic
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Jan 6, 2002
5714 posts
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Toronto
CuriousC wrote: Really annoying issue. I am looking at a wall that is a bearing wall in the basement and nothing of what could be a bearing wall on the main floor (raised floor bungalow) seems to be a bearing wall, not at least judging by the thickness of the wall ...
So.. what is the issue?
A glass of wine with you, sir, and the ladies I'll enjoy.
Revolutionary times must on occasion make do with considerable abridgements in order to accentuate the political line more strongly.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Jun 27, 2015
1622 posts
207 upvotes
East York, ON
hoob wrote: So.. what is the issue?
Can't say if certain walls are structural without removing the drywall
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Deal Addict
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Aug 12, 2007
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Waterloo
CuriousC wrote: Someone told me that on the top floor nothing excepting the exterior walls is a bearing wall, the roof sits on the exterior walls practically
Except if there is a Mid-beam in the which which rests on a bearing wall.
Also , bearing walls dont have a different thickness.
I'm going to say , get a contractor in to get a quote for whatever you are planning and he will tellya which walls are load bearing.

Also to your original Question. you can and might get lucky , but most City bureaucrats wont help you with this.
CuriousC wrote: Can't say if certain walls are structural without removing the drywall

Sure you can. you have to see whats above it and below it.
----
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Deal Addict
Jan 5, 2003
4139 posts
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Toronto
Even if you had the original plans, after 60 years and many renos, you can't really trust the original plans, especially if there were renovations without permits and inspections and structurally things don't seem to make any sense. Can't avoid it: you'll have to open up some drywall, but drywall is cheap and easy to repair.
Deal Addict
Sep 20, 2008
1077 posts
246 upvotes
Toronto
Why don't you climb into the attic and take a look at the ceiling joists? If they're sistered at a certain point, then the wall below is bearing. Alternatively, do you have a steel beam or a concrete wall in the middle of the basement? Most likely, this is supporting a wall above, which is supporting the roof. What is the maximum span of the room?
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Architectural Pencil Pusher
Sr. Member
Oct 22, 2016
545 posts
430 upvotes
Comox Valley
CuriousC wrote: Hi guys

My house was built around 1960. I would like to get a copy of the construction plans if possible?
Is this something one can get from the city? (for free or paid service?

thanks
CC
I asked the regional district for plans of a house built in 1989. They have them and it would cost $50 for them.
Deal Fanatic
Jan 25, 2007
8821 posts
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Paris
User452441 wrote: I asked the regional district for plans of a house built in 1989. They have them and it would cost $50 for them.
I would have paid $50. The county told me 8 years after my place was built they dont keep that stuff. Different areas probably have different rules.

They literally laughed at me on the phone with a “ha ha we dont keep information like that... what do you need it for?” Told me to contact the builder who was out of business.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Jun 27, 2015
1622 posts
207 upvotes
East York, ON
Faemow wrote: Why don't you climb into the attic and take a look at the ceiling joists? If they're sistered at a certain point, then the wall below is bearing. Alternatively, do you have a steel beam or a concrete wall in the middle of the basement? Most likely, this is supporting a wall above, which is supporting the roof. What is the maximum span of the room?
More or less true as far as I can see in my case
I do have a wall that goes along the longitudinal section of the basement
This is the thing that puzzles me, the walls above do not align to what seems to be the bearing walls in the basement
Green is main floor
Grey is te basement.
you are looking along the long axis of the house
Highlighted in blue and dotted are the walls that are very thick and that are bearing walls. (they seem to be cinder blocks)
As you can see the main floor walls do not aligng
The joists are probably sistered above the main floor walls because it was less expensive to put two piece joists there and the design allowed the sistering
To the left near the view point you can see a wall that I want to remove (open concept kitchen)
My neighbor removed the wall and he told me there is nothing there just 2x4s and drywall... but I would like to play save and put a beam there
Image
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Deal Fanatic
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Jan 6, 2002
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Toronto
CuriousC wrote: This is the thing that puzzles me, the walls above do not align to what seems to be the bearing walls in the basement
They don't need to if they're not load bearing; and even if load bearing it's possible to be offset like this as well up to a certain point.
CuriousC wrote: To the left near the view point you can see a wall that I want to remove (open concept kitchen)
My neighbor removed the wall and he told me there is nothing there just 2x4s and drywall... but I would like to play save and put a beam there
A 2x4 wall can still be load bearing (heck my entire HOUSE is 2x4 walls -- albeit non-dimensional.)

I suspect in your case none of the main floor walls are officially load bearing. A structural engineer would tell you for sure by looking at your exact roof truss/whatever structure. You main floor ceiling joists are likely structure under tension for the roof rafters and enough vertical support for the weight only of the ceiling.
A glass of wine with you, sir, and the ladies I'll enjoy.
Revolutionary times must on occasion make do with considerable abridgements in order to accentuate the political line more strongly.

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