Demolition Specifications

Demolition Specifications

Every demolition project will have its very own set of requirements and rules written out as demolition specifications. For the most part, there are some general specifications that will be required on any and every job.

Preliminary Planning

To begin, a demolition company or contractor must obtain a demolition permit, or demolition licence, prior to working on any type of demolition project. A building is not permitted by law to be torn down in any way prior to obtaining the necessary permit from within the city limits, which is usually obtained at the City Hall. In order to obtain the license (permit), you will need to perform the following operations:


  • Call for all utilities on the job site to be disconnected/sealed including but not limited to sewer, water, electricity and gas.

  • Verify that all utilities have been disconnected, capped or sealed off. Some cities may require written approval of such.

  • Some cities will require that rat baiting be performed and that a written confirmation of no rodent existence prior to receiving a demolition permit.

Survey for Hazards

Also considered to be part of the preliminary planning, a survey must be done of the entire building or structure that is being demolished to determine whether there are hazards within such as lead, asbestos, etc. In addition, cities also require rat baiting.

If there are hazards found, the hazardous elements must be removed thoroughly, properly and by code. Once the hazards have been removed, a further inspection should take place to ensure nothing was missed and that all elements have indeed been sufficiently removed. Once the removal has been confirmed, a written confirmation of the building being free from such hazards will be required to at minimum be on hand on the job site and could be required to be shown prior to being issued the demolition licence or demolition permit.

The primary reason for this work is to ensure that once this structure has been demolished that the nearby structures within the vicinity won’t see a problem with hazardous materials, insects or rodents.

As a note, some cities may require that you contact that City Health Department to inspect the building for lead, asbestos, any other dangerous elements or chemicals and rodents rather than performing the inspection yourself. Be sure to speak to the local City Hall or the location as to where you obtain your demolition permit or licence to find out the specifications of this required building inspection.

Time for Completion

From start to finish, the city in which the demolition project is taking place will have certain demolition specifications as to how long this process should take. Generally, you have three to six months to conclude the demolition project from start to finish; however, some cities will have different requirements such as 30 days. In addition, if you need more time than what is allotted with your permit or licence, you’ll need to contact the Director of Public Works or the person in charge of issuing the permit.