See below for frequently asked questions regarding fence by-laws and construction.

Frequently asked questions

Do I need a permit to build a fence?

A permit is not required to build a fence; however, you are required to comply with Fence By-law 2019-130. If the fence is being used to enclose a pool, a Pool Fence Permit is required.

When is a pool fence permit required?

All swimming pools including a swim spa and hot tub require a Pool Enclosure Permit prior to construction.

All swimming pools within the Town of East Gwillimbury (EG) must be fully enclosed in a safe manner by a fence, building, or wall. The enclosure shall:

  • Be no less than 1.2 metres (4 feet) in height and must surround the pool.
  • Have openings that are no greater than 100 millimeters (4 inches) spacing.
  • Be equipped with a lock as well as a self-closing and self-latching device on all gates and doors.
  • Not facilitate climbing.
  • Be maintained in a safe and structurally sound manner.
  • Be completely constructed before the pool is filled with water.

Swim spas and hot tubs do not require a fence provided they have a lockable cover capable of supporting a weight of at least 90.72 kg (200 pounds).

For further information on pool enclosures, refer to the Pool Enclosure By-law 2019-131.

When can I build my new fence?

Homeowners should not install any landscaping or construct any structures which may alter the grading and/or drainage to their lot or neighbouring lots until grading has been completed by the developer and certified by the consulting engineer. If you build a fence prior to the grading being approved your builder may ask, you to remove the fence. Please remember to always call 1-800-400-2255 prior to digging to ensure you will not be affecting any underground infrastructure.

What are the height restrictions for a fence?

Front yard fences shall not exceed a height of 0.9 metres (3 feet) except if chain link which shall not exceed 1.2 metres (4 feet) in height.

Side yard and rear yard fences shall not exceed 2 metres (6.6 feet) in height.

When erecting a fence, who determines the property line?

You can determine where your property line by looking at the property survey that you received at the time you bought your home. EG does not determine property lines. If you do not have a copy of your property survey you will have to hire a private firm to survey the property to determine the property line.

Is the adjoining property owner required to share in the cost of a division fence?

The cost of a fence between two property owners should be shared as both parties are legally considered joint owners of the fence.

If two property owners cannot agree or reach an agreement, the owner wishing to go ahead with building a fence must give a Notice of Intent to the adjoining property owner by registered mail, advising the intent to construct or maintain the division fence. The Notice of Intent must have the following information:

  • Three written quotes for the actual cost and/or basic cost (4 foot, 1-1/2-inch mesh, steel chain link fence) of the fence work
  • Statement that the construction/maintenance may begin 14 business days after the mailing of the Notice of Intent and may seek contributory payment for the work.
  • Statement that the adjoining owner may obtain three additional quotes no later than ten business days from the date of mailing of the Notice of Intent.

See Division Fence By-law 2019-129 and procedures for more information.

What are the set back provisions for erecting a fence or privacy screen?

All fences shall be located a minimum of 45 centimetres (18 inches) from a sidewalk.

A Privacy Screen shall be located a minimum of 1 metre (3.37 feet) from the rear and side lot line and a minimum of 4.5 metres (14.9 feet) from street line.

Please be advised no fences are permitted in a Sight Triangle or Driveway Sight Triangle.

Fence variance

If a proposed or existing fence or privacy fence is not in compliance with this by-law, the owner of the property on which the fence or privacy fence exists or is proposed to be constructed, relief from the by-law through a variance application may be submitted.

The completed fence variance application shall be submitted to the secretary of the Appeals Committee.

The application fee is $367.60 and can be paid by visiting Customer Service at the Civic Centre

Further questions?

If you have more questions, please send us an email for more information.