What about owner-builders?


If you are constructing your own home to live in, and acting as the general contractor, you may be an owner-builder. If a custom builder is building to your plans, you’re the homeowner, not an owner-builder.

Home in Hand

Owner-builders have options and unique responsibilities.

When building your own home as an owner-builder, you are eligible to be exempt from home warranty coverage. It’s important to know that the owner-builder bears all liability for the home’s construction—warranty coverage can help protect your investment. Minimum warranties requirements in Alberta are one year for labour and materials, two years on delivery and distribution system, five years on building envelop and ten years on structural components. If you choose to sell your home within ten years, you will need to provide the remaining warranty for your buyer. This coverage could be more expensive and more challenging to obtain if you don’t already have it from the start.

KNOW THE PROCESS before you build.

The owner-builder authorization process allows Albertans to build homes for their own personal use. To apply for an owner-builder authorization, you must complete the following:


Step One

REGISTER for The New Home Buyer Protection System through the Owner-Builder’s Portal. Documents are also available at municipalaffairs.alberta.ca.




Step Two

COMPLETE and sign the questionnaire (for each co-applicant).




Step three

SWEAR AND SIGN the affidavit of execution, sworn by a witness in front of a Commissioner for Oaths or Notary Public in and for the province of Alberta.


Swear and Sign


Step four

PAY the non-refundable application fee online, by cheque, certified cheque or money order.




Step five

SUBMIT the application to the New Home Buyer Protection Office, with signed original copies of the questionnaire(s) and the affidavit.




Step six

CONGRATULATIONS, you have completed the authorization process for owner-builders.



Owner-builder authorizations are issued by the Registrar if you:

  • checkmark REGISTER your new home with the Registrar
  • checkmark MEET the prescribed criteria
  • checkmark PAY the non-refundable application fee

The New Home Buyer Protection Office will review your completed application to ensure you are eligible for owner-builder authorization. Once the review is complete, the office will contact you and inform you of their decision.

A site visit by a compliance officer may follow to verify that you’re building your own home in compliance with the Act.

Owner-builder fees.

There is a non-refundable $750 fee to apply for owner-builder authorization. This includes a $655 application fee which covers compliance work required to ensure an owner-builder is complying with the Act including:

Reviewing the application + Advice on the application process and requirements + Potential site visits to prevent fraudulent activities

It also includes a $95 registration fee. This fee:

Is charged to all builders to enter their unit into the online registry + Supports the development and maintenance of the program