When Are Permits Required for Shipping Containers?

Permits Required for Shipping Containers

Are you planning on doing major home renovations or moving that require renting a container storage? Steel shipping containers are cost-effective, secure and water-tight, so it’s not surprising you’d want one to protect your possessions.

Before the excitement kicks in, there are permits you need to look into to avoid any consequences or penalties you may face. Here at Shield Storage, we want to help you navigate the confusing world of permits and regulations. Let’s explore together what is needed if you’re looking to get a shipping container.

Building Permits For Shipping Containers

At Shield Storage, we offer services in the provinces of Alberta, BC and Saskatchewan, so we will break it down by each province.


The rules vary in the province of Alberta, depending on which city or town you live in, the size of the shipping container and the duration of how long you have it. For a 10’ container, you do not need a permit in most cities. However, for a 20’ container, the cities of Calgary and Edmonton do require that you get a building permit if you’re planning to use it as storage.

British Columbia (BC)

In BC, you will be required to do a bit more homework when it comes to getting a permit. Factors that come into play are city, duration and the area. The area matters in BC, because if you’re looking to place one in the middle of a home in a crowded neighbourhood, the rules may be stricter.


In Saskatchewan, if you’re looking to use your shipping container for transport or storage, a permit isn’t required. Rural areas are generally more lenient, but if you’re planning to use it for occupancy, you will need a building permit.

In summary, if you’re looking to get a container storage rental, be sure to contact your city about the bylaws and what permits are required.

Relevant Building Regulations

Keep in mind that when you’re exploring the option of getting a container storage rental, permits aren’t the only thing to think about. You need to check with your city on things like zoning, land use and safety standards. These bylaws are set in place to make sure your container doesn’t negatively impact your surroundings or cross any legal lines.

Getting Your Storage Container Permits

The requirements will vary for each province and city. Ensure that you get the right information as it will affect the process, including:

  • The physical location of the container
  • Local rules and regulations
  • Physical condition of the container
  • How long the container will be on your property or work site
  • How the container’s presence will affect the community

Keep in mind that rules and regulations can change, so call your city permit bylaws and get the latest information from them.

Once you’re clear on the permits and your heart set on a container storage rental, consider stopping by Shield Storage. We prioritize our customers by offering short and long-term leasing options to meet your storage needs.

Contact our team for more information and to explore our storage options​​.