membership categories

There are 3 categories for membership

Designer Member
For practicing professional home and small building designers/draftspersons.
See our members
Student Member
For students enrolled in a community college or university programs of design and/or drafting.

Become a member now

We invite anyone who is interested in joining NSHBDA to please download and complete a Membership Application (PDF).

Frequently Asked Questions

Membership Information

How do I become a member of NSHBDA?

We invite anyone who is interested in joining NSHBDA to please download and complete a Membership Application (PDF).

Completed applications can either be forwarded it to or simply bring it to one of our regular monthly meetings (3rd Tuesday of the month at 6pm at NSCC Waterfront Campus.

How do I become a member of NSHBDA?

We invite anyone who is interested in joining NSHBDA to please download and complete a Membership Application (PDF).

Completed applications can either be forwarded it to or simply bring it to one of our regular monthly meetings (3rd Tuesday of the month at 6pm at NSCC Waterfront Campus.

Why should someone join the NSHBDA?

Our members are actively working to help improve the standard of design and drafting for homes and small buildings in Nova Scotia. We welcome anyone interested in joining to come to a monthly information session, and see who we are and how we are working to improve our industry.

The benefits of membership are numerous:
  • Unique Networking opportunities with the industry leaders
  • Ability to share common interest in industry development and active involvement in that development
  • Access to leading-edge information at our monthly information sessions
  • Enrollment in an accredited and recognized education program (including discount for full designer members)
  • Listing on this website with your company logo, email and web address
  • Participation in our Annual Design Competition
  • Access to unique Marketing Opportunities (e.g., the NSHBDA website, three home show, display advertising, etc.)
  • Presentation opportunities
  • Possible use of using the NSHBDA as trade identity (i.e., “proud member of NSHBDA” on your website or business cards, etc.)
  • Access to the Annual General Meeting and Christmas Social
What do you do at the monthly meetings?

Monthly meetings are primarily used as teaching sessions for our members, where industry leaders are brought in to bring us up to speed on the latest advances in building technology and industry practice.

We use these information sessions as an open dialogue between members and our industry partners, and are an opportunity for our members to share design concepts, procedures and details. We also use these meetings to inform members of upcoming courses, Association business and industry news.

Monthly meetings are preceded by the monthly Board of Directors meeting as well as a sit-down meal and social gathering at a local eating establishment.

We strive to make these monthly sessions informative and welcoming to all members. We also invite our corporate members to introduce themselves and let us know what new products and services they offer.

Meetings are held at the NSCC Ivany Campus, with a video-link provided to members at the NSCC Lunenburg Campus.

What courses and information sessions are offered, and who can sign up for them?

All of our courses and information sessions are open to all members.

Courses are the information programs that are required for completion of our Certification Program. Designer Members receive a discounted rate, and Student Members are only charged a nominal fee for courses we offer in-house.

Some courses are presented by the Nova Scotia Building Officials Association (see for a list of their upcoming courses), and are not generally available to the public at large. We also work with the Nova Scotia Home Builders Association, the Nova Scotia Department of Environment and Labour, and other industry partners.

Information sessions are the in-house meetings held during our monthly meetings. In these sessions, we discuss industry news, the latest advances in building technology and industry practice. These sessions are intended to foster open dialogue between designers and their industry partners.

Certification Program

NSHBDA actively promotes skills upgrading and ongoing education for all of our members. We offer an industry-approved designer Certification Program.

The four levels of certification are as follows:
Accredited member Technical (PDF)
Accredited member Advanced Technical (PDF)
• Accredited member Designer (proposed)
• Accredited member Master Designer (proposed)

This program has been developed in partnership with key stakeholders in the industry, including the Nova Scotia Building Officials Association, the Nova Scotia Home Builders Association, as well as Nova Scotia Architects Association, Association of Professional Engineers of Nova Scotia, and the Interior Designers of Nova Scotia.

You can download our drawing review requirements here.

After completing the first level of our training program, an NSHBDA “Accredited Member” is issued a stamp to seal their plans, indicating that they were prepared by an accredited, professional designer.

The selected training courses establish a path towards improvement of design skills and quality standards in the industry, and the code of ethics brings a fresh new approach to the residential and small commercial design and drafting industry.

Student Bursary Program

$1,000 towards Second-Year Tuition

2015-2016 Winner: Jessica Burgoyne, Drafting- Architectural, NSCC Lunenburg Campus

This is an opportunity to entice students of NSCC’s Architectural Drafting, Architectural Engineering Technologist and Construction Administration Technicians programs to get involved in NSHBDA.  Our Association offers students and professionals alike, an opportunity to gain knowledge through education and training programs and direct, personal contact with leading professional designers.  It also introduces new skills and helps maintain leading-edge industry knowledge, making us all better designers and possibly better candidates for future job opportunities.

In addition to these benefits, it also gives our Association an opportunity to financially help an appropriate and deserving student.

1) Candidates must be student members of NSHBDA
2) Candidates must be active in NSHBDA
3) Candidates must be a first year NSCC student in one of the above noted programs, returning for the second year studies

Judging will be carried out by the NSHDA bursary management sub-committee.  Upon selection of the appropriate student member, their name will be submitted to the executive/ board of directors for final approval.

One major element in the judge’s decision will be involvement in the Association. The judges will consider attendance at our monthly meetings, workshop weekends and any other training opportunities that a student maybe able to participate in.  They will be looking for a student that has a desire and passion for the industry.  A scholastic element may also be considered, but it will not be the major component in the decision making process. Other elements to be considered are school attendance and performance, overall quality of work, meeting of deadlines and personal involvement as a team player.

The winner will be announced at the June NSHBDA annual general meeting.  A cheque for $1,000.00 will be given directly to the returning student at the September meeting.  If the winner fails to return for the second year of studies, they will forfeit the bursary and it will be forwarded to the runner up winner.  This person will only be announced if the need should arise.

Policies & Procedures, By-laws, Codes & Requirements

If you are interested in learning more about the Association, or want to refresh your knowledge of our policies & procedures, by-laws, code of ethics, or certification requirements, please feel free to download any or all of the following:

NSHBDA ByLaws (Includes the Code of Ethics)

NSHBDA Policies and Procedures (Including Course Reimbursement Policy, Use of Association Logo, Database Policy, etc.)

NSHBDA Certification Level Descriptions and Required Courses (Including required courses, etc.)