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Frequently Asked Questions

New subdivision being built


 When can the builder sod my lot?
The builder has one year from the date of occupancy to complete the sodding of each lot. The developer/builder determines the best timing based on having enough work to justify bringing in their crews. Contact your builder for timing questions. If delays are excessive, contact the Public Works Department for assistance.
 When can I pave my driveway?
Check your purchase and sale agreement to see if paving is included with your purchase. If not, it is the responsibility of the homeowner. Since there are underground services that may settle with time, we suggest you hold off paving your driveway for at least a year or two. Where sidewalks exist, the Municipality ensures the section between the sidewalk and the curb gets paved by the builder/developer.
 Can I widen my driveway?
Due to narrower lots, there is less grassed boulevard space available for trees, utilities, and street parking. As a result, the Municipality does not usually permit widening of driveways beyond the approved widths. There may be exceptions made where a lot has a large frontage and enough boulevard remains for street utilities and on-street parking. It is at the sole discretion of the Municipality to approve these requests. If approved, the homeowner must first pay for the additional gravel and asphalt required. Curb cut applications can be made by calling 905-623-3379 ext. 2309.
When can I build a fence in my rear and side yards with my neighbours?
You should not build fences until your lot grading is certified by the Public Works Department in case the fence line requires more grading. After inspection by the Municipality, the builder can complete all lot-grading changes and we will certify the lot. Check your purchase and sale agreements for any conditions regarding fencing.
When can I get my grading deposit back?

The Municipality is not party to any grading or damage deposits in plans of subdivision.

The amount and conditions for refund are between the builder and the purchaser through your purchase and sale agreement. The builder holds lot-grading deposits and usually returns them to the purchaser after the Municipality and the builder/developer's engineer have approved and certified the lot grading. Contact the Public Works Department to confirm that the Municipality has certified the lot grading and then contact your builder for return of the deposit.

The builder says that the return of my deposit has something to do with the Municipality. Who has my money and when do I get it back?

The Municipality of Clarington holds letters of credit from developers to ensure that all work such as: roads, storm sewers, fencing and landscaping are completed. This agreement, however, is a separate legally binding agreement between the Municipality and the developer only. 

Builders sometimes charge the purchaser for deposits on their home. When this is required, you should check your purchase agreement carefully before you sign to determine what the deposit is for, who will be holding it and when it will be returned. Deposits paid by the purchaser to the builder are a private matter and fall under a distinctly separate legal agreement between the purchaser and the builder. In the case of such private agreements, the Municipality of Clarington has no authority to intervene on the purchaser's behalf in obtaining a refund for any deposits paid.

Can I install a gate in the fence at the rear of my yard if it backs onto Municipal land?

We require developers of new communities to install chain link fences between residential properties and municipal property. Typically, these fences are located 150mm (6 inches) onto the municipal property.

The Municipality has a Gate Access Policy regarding the permitted locations for gates into municipal land. You can install a gate into developed parks, but not into woodlots, open space areas or storm water pond blocks.

Homeowners must submit an application if they want to install a gate into municipal property. If approved, the entire cost of the gate will be the responsibility of the homeowner and the gate must be constructed to the standard established by the Municipality.

Gate Access applications can be obtained by calling the Public Works Department at 905 623-3379 ext. 2312.

When can I build a deck?
Decks not attached to the house and less than 10 square metres (108 square feet) in area do not require a permit. Decks larger than 10 square metres and all decks attached to a dwelling, and being 2 feet above grade, do require a building permit. Please note that zoning by-law requirements regulate the location of all buildings and decks. Check with the Building Branch to see how this applies to your situation by calling 905-623-3379 ext. 2310.
Can I use open space behind or beside my property?
If your lot is next to a woodlot, trail, hydro/gas corridor, stormwater management pond, buffer or stream, please recognize that these are public spaces and there may be pedestrian and/or cycling traffic through the areas. Although the land may be directly behind or beside your lot, you cannot use it for individual sheds or play equipment. Because these areas will maintain a natural state, grass and weed cutting will not occur.
Will the future school shown on the neighbourhood plan actually be built?

Schools on designated sites in your neighbourhood are not guaranteed. Although we approve future school sites in conjunction with the school boards, the respective school board decides if a school will be built or not. If the school board chooses not to build a new school, the property may be sold and used for other purposes. Attendance at schools in the areas that still have to be constructed is also not guaranteed. Students may be accommodated in temporary facilities or directed to schools outside of the area.

For information on bussing and a listing of existing schools and those planned in the near future you should contact the applicable school board.

If you purchase a lot near a school site, temporary facilities such as portables for extra students may be located on the school property close to your house and some school areas may be lit at night. You will also notice increased traffic during morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times.

What is planned for the undeveloped land around my home?

A wide variety of uses may be planned for vacant land in your neighbourhood, such as apartment buildings, institutional facilities, stores, offices or industrial buildings. In addition, applications to change land uses can be made at any time.

If you are interested in what might be developed in your neighbourhood, please speak with a Planner at the Planning and Development Services Department by email or by calling 906-623-3379.


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