House Plans and Copyrights

As with music and films, house plans are protected by the Canadian Copyright Law, as specified in a section reserved for this at  Not many people are aware of this fact and this is why I wanted to make this the subject of my first communiqué.

To sum up, when you make the purchase of a home plan you cannot photocopy or resell it.  A construction contractor cannot build more than one home from a home plan and he cannot modify it without first obtaining a licence authorizing such modifications.  Moreover, no one can consult a designer, architectural technician or architect with a photo or an image of one of Drummond Designs’ models to have it reproduced or have a similar model drawn up, even with slight modifications.  I invite you to consult the PDF document included in the Copyrights section via this link.

Through our blog, I wish to address construction contractors as well as designers, architectural technicians and residential architects, who are numerous in visiting our Internet site; how can our firm enforce respect of its copyrights and allow you to legally serve your customers?  As you know, plagiarism is an immense grey zone in our line of work and copyrights are not well known in this industry.  Some will say that misreading copyright laws suits certain businesses, but we make it our duty to educate our customers on this subject.

I invite you to send me your comments and propose ideas which will make life easier for all parties involved who want to work honestly at improving our architectural heritage.  We have excellent lawyers who presently have several plagiarism pursuits in hand, but we are more inclined towards finding practical solutions with our eventual customers rather than to pursue each offender.

Thank you for your attention and I am eager to hear from you !

Yves Carignan
President and General Manager
Drummond Designs Inc.

Written by Yves Carignan View all posts by this author →

Businessman, blogger and speaker, Yves Carignan chairs and directs Drummond House Plans since 2002 with his wife and partner Marie-France Roger.

There are 5 comments for this article
  1. gary aguila at 12 h 50 min

    What is the option of posting your link at a particular builders web site. This is some kind of a free ad for your company and if client(s) will choose a house design from your archive then the company can suggest to their client to buy prints from your company otherwise the builder will not be able to built this design because of the legalities. Not unless the plans is part of the whole contract. Most of my clients have its own designers and would like to get ideas fron the outside world.

    New Jersey

  2. ycarignan at 14 h 01 min

    This is surely a great suggestion to help Builders diversifying their offer. However, we must make sure the builder will not suggest a local drafter to redo the plans… Pricewise, it is not the best idea for him but we saw that kind of infringment before. The idea is great and if you know some builders who would like to work with us, we would be more than pleased !

    Thanks Gary.

    Yves Carignan

  3. Dr. House Plans at 9 h 40 min

    I never really thought about copyright protection in the area of house plans. I guess it is an architecural design, kind of like art, and deserves a copyright.

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