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Mississauga City Council Legalizes Safe Second Units

Jul 04, 2013

This week, City Council approved a plan to legalize second units in Mississauga. Ontario laws now require municipalities to allow second units in homes.  These units are also known as basement apartments, in-law suites and secondary suites.

“With our plan, homeowners will be able to make their units safe and legal – every city needs safe, affordable housing for people to feel they belong,” said Ed Sajecki, the City’s commissioner of Planning & Building. “The City’s second units plan will help to improve affordable housing in Mississauga.”

Sajecki said the Official Plan amendment and zoning bylaw changes approved by Council permit second units in homes.  The units must meet Ontario Building Code standards.  Council also approved a licensing program, and will consider a proposed bylaw to support the program in the fall.  If approved, the bylaw will set licensing fees and other requirements, such as inspections and proof of insurance, for owners who want to rent second units.

“The City’s goals for legalizing second units include ensuring safety, preserving neighbourhood character and maintaining public services,” said Heather MacDonald, Director of Strategic Housing Initiatives.  The City held public meetings in 2012 to gather the public’s thoughts and ideas about second units in Mississauga.  People could also email their comments or fill out a survey online.  A statutory public meeting required by the Planning Act was held in early 2013.

The City’s Second Units Implementation Strategy is part of Housing Choices: Mississauga’s Affordable Housing Strategy.  A public education program about legal second units in Mississauga will be available in the fall of 2013.  Visit the City’s Facebook page, follow our Twitter feed #secondunits or visit for more information.

As Canada's sixth largest city, Mississauga is home to 741,000 residents and more than 54,000 businesses, including more than 60 Fortune 500 companies with Canadian head offices or major divisional head offices. A diverse, progressive and award-winning municipality located on the shores of Lake Ontario in the heart of the Greater Toronto Area, Mississauga is "Leading Today for Tomorrow" by focussing on delivering services, implementing its Strategic Plan, delivering value for money and maintaining infrastructure.

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Ann Lehman-Allison
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