Compliance certificates are documents issued by municipalities confirming that development on a property meets the regulations of a municipality’s land use bylaw, specifically the siting, lot coverage, height and use of buildings. Starland County issues these as a service to property owners.
Compliance certificates are most commonly required as a part of real estate purchasing contracts. Standard residential real estate purchase contracts often require the vendor to guarantee that land use regulations are met and property improvements do not encroach upon easements, utility right-of-ways or adjacent lands. Mortgage lenders, seeking to protect their investment, or lawyers, seeking to protect client interests often ask for compliance certificates.
A request for a compliance certificate must be made in writing to Starland County and must include two copies of a real property report which must be prepared by a qualified Alberta Land Surveyor, along with the application fee established in the fee schedule. Following the receipt of this application Starland county will review the request and issue a compliance certificate if the real property report meets the regulations in the land use bylaw. If approved the real property report will be initialed or stamped and a compliance certificate will be prepared. These documents will be sent to the applicant and filed at Starland County. Please be aware that it is up to the applicant to make sure that the submitted real property report contains current information as compliance will only be certified to the submitted report. Past real property reports may not reflect current development of the property and current compliance can not be guaranteed.
In instances of non-compliance the review may indicate that permits are required for buildings that were constructed without permits. If the property is non-conforming, a letter of non-conformance will be issued stating the reasons for non-compliance. The onus will then be on the property owner to rectify the cause of non-compliance or apply for a variance, encroachment agreement or special development allowance.
A building may be deemed non-conforming if it meets all regulations in the bylaw when it was built, but does not meet all regulations in the current bylaw. Generally, non-confirming buildings are allowed to remain but future development is restricted.