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Building Process Step 8. Building Approval

Are you thinking of building a home or doing a home extension? By law, you need to have approval before you begin most types of building works.

How do I apply for a building approval or permit?

 To apply for a building approval you need to engage a registered accredited certifier. They’ll apply for the building approval (BA) on your behalf.
A building certifier will assess whether the proposed work complies with the Building Act 1975 and associated standards. If it does, they will issue a building permit.

The building approval notes what inspections are required while the work is underway. The building certifier is then required to carry out these inspections.

Building certifiers cannot approve any work that conflicts with the local planning scheme or the Queensland Development Code. If you are unsure whether your work complies, you can request a town planning appraisal form the council.

What’s required for a building permit?

  • If you are an owner builder, an Owner Builder Permit is required if the project value is over $11,000
  • QBCC insurance – if the project is being built by a builder and the value of the project is over $3300
  • Q Leave when the project value is more than $150,000 (ex GST)
  • A Form 15 if a structural engineer has completed any designs on the project
  • Development Approval (DA) if one has been granted by town planning
  • Siting Variation/Relaxation if work does not conform to Standard Building By Laws
  • Energy Efficiency Report for work carried out on habitable rooms of the house

Plans should be lodged and approved with council once:

  • all the information has been received
  • the plans have been checked by the certifier for boundary clearances,  clear of sewers/ storm water,
  • checking for demolition control areas.

Once the Building Approval has been granted, a copy is sent to the owner and builder allowing work to start.

Final Inspections by your certifier are required under the current legislation. An Engineer may carry out Footings, Slab and Frame Inspections. An Inspection Report will be left with the builder or owner. This indictaes whether it has been approved; approved with comments or not satisfactory. If the inspection is not satisfactory another inspection will hence be arranged.

How long do construction permits last for?

The building work must be completed within 12 months of the permit being granted. Before a Final Inspection, the certificates Form 16 and 15 will be required.

This might include termite protection, glazing, trusses, wet seal, electrical, energy efficiency and engineer inspections. Compiled forms including the Form 21 (Finalisation Certificate) which will be issued to the council and the owner thereby completing the building application process.

How much does it cost?

Prices will vary according to how complicated the application is. A straightforward house renovation might cost around $1660. And, a small job such as decks and portico roofs will cost between $700-$880. Inspections are approximately $220 each.

Keen to learn more? Follow the important steps in your building process:

STEP 1: Research   STEP 2: Budget   STEP 3: Relaxation   STEP 4: Working Plans
STEP 5: Engineering      STEP 6: Appoint Builder     STEP 7: Contract
STEP 8: Building Approval      STEP 9: Completion