ACCESSORY BUILDINGS AND STRUCTURES
Accessory structures such as sheds, detached garages, air conditioners, etc. are regulated by the Zoning By-law and require some thought and planning before you build or locate one on your property. The City of London categorizes these structures as "accessory" because they are "incidental and subordinate to the main use of the lot." The main use of the lot is the residence.
The total lot coverage of all accessory buildings or structures on a lot shall not exceed 10% of the lot area in every residential zone. This means that if you add up the floor area of all the accessory structure(s) on your property, you cannot cover more than 10% of your lot. Furthermore, because the accessory building coverage is included in the percentage of total coverage permitted on a lot, you need to know your lot dimensions, the "footprint" of your house, the dimensions of all existing and proposed accessory structures, and the coverage that your zone permits when making a decision about how large a new accessory structure will be.
If you think you're approaching that 10% maximum for accessory structures, or the maximum zone coverage, you may need to get a "Real Property Report" showing all the buildings on the property, with dimensions, to ensure accuracy. Uncovered or open swimming pools do not count for coverage calculation purposes.
The height of an accessory structure is measured from the average finished grade (ground) to the upper-most point of the building structure, and shall not exceed 4.0 metres (13.1 feet). This is a good rule to go by when planning your new structure, however, you can increase the height up to 6.0 metres (19.7 feet) as long as you increase the distance from the property line by the same amount that you increase the height. For example, if you want to build 1.5m taller (than the permitted 4m), then you need to move the building 1.5m farther from the property line than the minimum (more information below).
MINIMUM SETBACKS & BUILDING LOCATION
Accessory buildings and structures are only permitted in the "interior side yard" or "rear yard"; not the "front" or "exterior side yards". They can be no closer than 0.6 metres (2.0 feet) to the side or rear lot lines. As discussed, where the height exceeds 4.0 metres (13.1 feet) the setback from the side and rear lot lines shall be increased by the difference in the height above 4.0 metres (13.1 feet), to a maximum of 6.0m (19.7ft). "Yards" are defined at the end of Section 2 Definitions, of the Zoning By-law.
Any structure greater than 10m2 (108 square feet) requires a building permit, so take that into consideration as you plan the size of your accessory structure. Building permits are relatively inexpensive and very important, not only to ensure your structure is safe, but also when you look to sell your property. More information about building permits is available online.
|Sheds:||General Rules and Regulations|
|Coverage||The total coverage of all accessory structures cannot exceed 10% of your lot.|
|Height||Should be no higher than 4.0m (13.1') but can extend up to 6.0m (19.7').|
|Size||A simple shed under 10m2 (108 square feet) does not require a building permit.|
|Location||Keep your accessory structure a minimum of 0.6m (2') off the property line.|
|Uses||Do not use the accessory structure, garage, or shed as living space or to support a home based business.|
|In Doubt?||Call the City of London to help answer any of your questions, or a surveyor to get a detailed plan of your property.|