Consumer protection

The City of Vaughan’s Business Licensing By-law 122-2022 (PDF) regulates which businesses must be licensed to conduct business in Vaughan and what information they must provide to residents. Here are a few things to keep in mind when looking to hire a contractor.

Measuring tape and tools on top of building plans.

All renovators, fence installers, pavers, landscapers, pool installers and snowplow contractors must be licensed by the City. Through licensing, the City can better ensure businesses comply with all City by-laws intended to uphold public health and safety, consumer protection and nuisance control.


Businesses that perform any of the activities outlined in the City’s Business Licensing By-law 122-2022 (PDF) under the renovator, fence installer, paver, landscaper and pool installer business categories are required to be licensed. Examples of these activities include: 

  • alteration, repair or renovation of buildings or structures
  • installation of swimming pools or hot tub
  • installing fences, banisters or rails, including pool enclosures
  • paving, resurfacing, repairing or sealing driveways or parking lots on private property, which may include municipal boulevards adjacent to such private property
  • creating, altering or maintaining “soft landscaping,” which refers to vegetation, and “hard landscaping,” such as patio stones, concrete, decorative architectural structures or non-horticultural elements
  • persons who solicit or advertise any of the above activities, or who hold themselves out to the public as performing any of these activities


For example, the following would require a City of Vaughan licence:

  • carpenters
  • framers
  • roofers
  • painters
  • tile setters
  • tree removal companies

Some persons do not require a City of Vaughan contractor licence, such as those: 

  • who are employed by a licensed renovator, fence installer, paver, landscaper and pool installer, but who do not perform work outside of their employment.
  • whose principal business is to construct new buildings covered by Tarion.
  • in trades which are licensed or otherwise certified by provincial legislation.


For example, the following would not require a City of Vaughan licence:

  • homebuilders
  • electricians
  • plumbers

As outlined in the City’s Business Licensing By-law 122-2022 (PDF), these businesses are required to take various measures to protect consumers, employees and the community at large, such as:

  • provide services in compliance with all relevant City by-laws, regulations and related decisions.
  • carry a minimum of $2 million in commercial general liability insurance coverage for their work.
  • provide a list of all relevant City by-laws and required permits to a customer in writing prior to providing a written contract.
  • provide a written contract to their customers, specifying the work that will be performed and the payment schedule, prior to accepting any payments.
  • display their business name and licence number on a placard issued by the City on the dashboard of their business vehicles, as well as on any signs or advertising, where permitted.


Check if a contractor is licensed by the City

To check if a contractor is licensed by the City, contact By-law and Compliance, Licensing and Permit Services at 905-832-2281 or However, the fact that a contractor is licensed does not necessarily mean they will be a good fit for the job.


Do your due diligence

Residents must do their own due diligence to ensure the contractor is qualified and a good fit for the job. Residents should look for a contractor that:

  • shows up on time.
  • deals with questions and concerns directly.
  • has solid experience with the type of work to be done.
  • provides references.


Ask your friends, family, co-workers and neighbours for recommendations on good contractors. You can also contact accredited organizations like the Canadian Home Builders' Association and the Better Business Bureau, visit a home show and look at local advertising. Use caution when contacting companies that advertise illegally, such as placing stickers and posters on public property.

Contact Information

By-law and Compliance, Licensing and Permit Services

Vaughan City Hall
2141 Major Mackenzie Dr.
Vaughan, ON L6A 1T1

Fax Number