Processing Your Building Application

When you have submitted your Building Consent application, it is checked to make sure the form is completely filled in and that the necessary information is attached. This is not a check for compliance with the Building Code. If the form is completely filled in, and the required documentation is attached, the application is accepted and entered into the Council’s computer system.

Under the Building Act 2004, the Council has 20 working days from this time to process the application and approve or decline the consent.

(Over the Christmas period, no consents are processed between 20 December and 10 January every year.)

Once the application is accepted, a check is made of Council services, including water/sewer connection, Council mains and vehicle access. We then check that your plans comply with the Building Act 2004 and the Building Code and that your project is a permitted activity under the District Plan.

If we require more information, we will contact you. The processing time is paused until all the requested information is provided to the Council.

In some cases, building consent applications may need to be checked by external specialists. Where this happens, there will be extra costs associated with your application.

Once your application has been approved, the processing clock is stopped. All costs associated with the consent are added together and an invoice is posted to you. Upon payment of the invoice your approved plans and building consent are issued.

Once your consent is issued

When your building consent arrives, you should read it fully before starting work.

Read through the first page to confirm that the building consent has been issued for the correct property

Page two lists the conditions placed on the consent. These include:

  • Requirements for notice to the Council before work starts, when inspections are required, and when work is completed;
  • A requirement not to start work until any other approvals required for the project (as listed in the Project Information Memorandum) have been obtained;
  • A requirement to start work within 12 months of issue of the consent, or the consent lapses.

Required inspections for the project are set out on page three, along with a reminder that if you want an inspection, we will try to book it for you the next working day

Following the list of inspections is additional information applicable to the consent

The PIM provides information on any special features or conditions for the parcel of land, and details of any other consent you might need from the Council before you can proceed. You may, for example, require a Resource Consent from the Council to undertake the work or activity which will take place in the building. You may already have obtained all other necessary consents from us, but please check the PIM before starting any building work.

The final page is an Application for Code Compliance Certificate (Form 6). This is to be completed after the project is completed, and sent in to the Council to enable a Code Compliance inspection to be booked.

A building consent is, in effect, a licence for you to complete a building project and like any licence it has certain requirements that need to be adhered to. The building consent clearly outlines these requirements with regards to your project. 

Undertaking the work

Once you have received your consent, obtained any other approvals required and complied with any resource consent requirements, work can start. Red-stamped approved plans must be on site at all times – otherwise, how do you know what you are doing complies with your consent? The Council’s Building Control Officers also need the plans on site to check compliance. If plans are not on site, the inspection will not be carried out. Another inspection will be required at extra cost to you.

The Building Act 2004 requires you to start work within 12 months of the issue of your consent. Failure to do so results in the consent lapsing, and a new consent will be required if you still wish to undertake the work.

Booking an Inspection

When an inspection is required, please ring the Council on (06) 278 0555 or toll free 0800 111 323 and we will try to book it for you the next working day.

A Council building Control Officer will visit the building site to check that the work has been done to standard and according to the approved plans.  Each inspection must be completed and passed before the next stage of work can begin.

If work is not in accordance with the approved plans, is not up to scratch, or has not been inspected and passed at the right stages, the Building Control Officer may require it to be demolished and done again.

Completion of work

When the work is completed, you must book a final inspection. Before the inspection is carried out you must complete the Application for Code Compliance Certificate (Form 6), a copy of which is included in your building consent and send it in to Council. If you have lost the form contact the Council for a replacement.

Code Compliance Certificate

Every building consent needs a Code Compliance Certificate to verify that the work has been completed in accordance with the red stamped approved documents issued with the building consent, and in compliance with the New Zealand Building Code.

It is the owner’s responsibility to get a Code Compliance Certificate. The Council must decide whether to grant a Code Compliance Certificate within two years of granting a building consent. This means that you have two years to complete your project from the time your building consent is granted.

The Council has 20 working days from the date of application for a Code of Compliance Certificate to decide whether or not to grant the certificate. In practice,the Council starts the 20 day clock when you ring to request a Code Compliance inspection. The clock will be paused until you provide the completed Application for Code Compliance Certificate form (if you have not already done so), and continued when the form is received. The clock will also be paused if your Code Compliance inspection results in a failure, and restarted when a new inspection is booked.