Property

Consents no longer needed for low-risk work

Good news for those wanting to add a sleep-out, shed or carport to a property: today’s the day that consents are no longer needed for low-risk building work.

Monday, August 31st 2020

Building and Construction Minister Jenny Salesa

Back in May the Government announced that it would be introducing new exemptions to the Building Act to make such building work easier and cheaper.

Those exemptions have now come into force and they are set to save property owners both time and money.

Building and Construction Minister Jenny Salesa says that not only do the exemptions make basic home improvements easier and cheaper, but they mean less red tape and lower compliance costs.

“Certain structures can be built for less without any unexpected hold-ups that may have resulted from needing building consent.

"And the exemptions will also help to improve the productivity of the building and construction sector, supporting the Covid-19 recovery.”

The exemptions mean that single-storey detached buildings of up to 30 square metres - such as sleep-outs, sheds, awnings and greenhouses, as well as carports up to 40 square metres - will now not require a Council-approved building consent.

However, the exemptions for all such work will only apply if the design of the project has been carried out or reviewed by a professional engineer, or a licenced building practitioner has carried out or supervised the design and construction.

And while many smaller building projects will no longer need a consent, they will still need to comply with the Building Code.

The exemptions are expected to result in 9,000 fewer consents to process a year and save property owners $18 million in consenting costs each year.

They are intended to help clear the way for the construction sector to focus on larger projects that provide jobs and can assist the country’s recovery from Covid-19.

But the exemptions are just one part of the Government’s broader building system reform programme.

That programme includes the suite of changes to the Building Act that were announced last year and which are intended to cut through red-tape and make carrying out prefab builds easier.

More information on the new exemptions can be read here

Read more:

Prefab changes don't address finance issue 

Comment: Sign of changing times 

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