Here's what you need to know about the new Building Act exemptions and our district plan
- The exemptions, which come into effect on 31 August, mean homeowners won’t need a building consent for single storey detached buildings up to 30 square metres. That includes things like sleepouts, sheds, carports and greenhouses.
- Even if a project doesn't need a building consent, it still needs to comply with the rules in our District Plan as well as other legislation.
- All buildings, including exempt work, must comply with the Building Code standards.
- While some low risk building work like glasshouses, can be done by the homeowner, most work will need to be designed by a chartered design engineer and built or supervised by a Licensed Building Practioner (LBP).
- And even if the build is exempt, for peace of mind, you can still apply for a building consent if you want. The usual consent fees would apply.
- Here's a summary of all the new exemptions and their conditions.
- There's more about the new exemptions on our website
Protect your investment
While it's great news for homeowners, don't break out the hammer just yet. There are still some important things to consider before getting started.
A property is most people’s biggest investment and that means getting it right when you do any development on your section.
The key thing to remember is to check with us first, as even if a project doesn’t need a building consent, it still needs to comply with the rules in our District Plan, meet NZ building code standards and other legislation.
Qualified professionals needed in most instances
In most instances, exempt builds must also be designed by chartered design engineers or built and supervised by a Licensed Building Practitioner.
What's in a district plan?
Each council has their own set of rules that apply to their specific district plan.
Our plan tells you things like how much of your land you can develop; how much external living space and vehicle turning space you need; how close you can build to your front or side boundary and height to boundary standards to protect daylight, privacy and ventilation for your neighbours, among other things.
There are different development standards for urban, low density, rural zones, as well as other zones in our district, so it’s important to know what standards apply to your property and project.
Doing your homework and following the rules in the plan adds value to everyone’s property, retains amenity values, and maintains good neighbourly relationships.
Come and have a chat with our planners before you get started. We’re here to help, and getting off on the right foot can save you a lot of expense and heartache further down the track. Phone 0800 734 834 (in district) or 07 862 8609.
Lodging your exempt building information on your property file
While there is no requirement to do so, we also think it’s a good idea for customers to lodge their exempt building information with us.
That way the information goes on your property record, which is useful for valuation purposes, or if you sell your house.
And even if the build is exempt, for peace of mind, you can still apply for a building consent if you want. The usual consent fees would apply.