Complying Development Certificate
A complying development certificate is an alternative to a DA and only available for routine work classed as complying development under council’s planning controls or a State planning policy. A complying development certificate is issued if a proposed development complies with relevant planning controls and building controls under the Building Code of Australia (BCA). City Building Approvals can issue complying development certificates. The certificate must be obtained before any building work commences, including site works such as demolition and excavation.
Apply for a Construction Certificate
If you have development consent after submitting a DA to council, you need a construction certificate before you can start building work. If you have a complying development certificate, you do not need a construction certificate. A construction certificate confirms building plans comply with the BCA, are ‘not inconsistent’ with the development consent, and comply with relevant conditions of the development consent. Accredited certifiers and councils can issue construction certificates. A construction certificate (or complying development certificate) must be obtained before building work commences. Without one, you cannot obtain an occupation certificate at the completion of building work.
Find out about Inspections
Commencement – at the commencement of the building work. The intention of this inspection is to establish that site works, in preparation for the building, are in place and in accordance with both legislative and approval (conditions of consent) requirements of Council.
Stormwater – prior to covering any stormwater drainage connections. Primarily this inspection requires the certifier to view the stormwater connection to the street, easement, detention basin or other means of stormwater disposal. The inspection does not include linework associated with effluent disposal or water supply but should include the stormwater line to the connection point.
Footings/Piers – after excavation for and prior to the placement of footings. The method of construction will determine when or if this inspection is necessary.
Slab – prior to pouring any in-situ reinforced concrete building element, this refers to slab on ground, core filled block work, suspended slabs and the like.
Frame – prior to the covering of the framework for any floor, wall, roof or other building element. Generally this is prior to lining the structure and ideally after all services and installations (ie air conditioning, plumbing, wiring) have been installed but permits external cladding, veneers or roofing.
Wet Area – prior to the covering of waterproofing in any wet areas. Wet areas include bathrooms, ensuites and laundries.
Final – after the building work has been completed (incl. driveways & landscaping) and prior to any occupation certificate being issued in relation to the building. Should the structure not be completed and occupation is sought an interim occupation certificate may be considered.
At least two days before work starts, the PCA must inform you about the inspections required and you must inform your builder. The builder will make arrangements with the PCA for inspections to be carried out as needed. The PCA may not be able to issue certificates for completed work if inspections are not undertaken.
Failure to comply will result in the inability to occupy the building work.
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What is an Interim/Final Occupation Certificate?
An occupation Certificate certifies that the building or nominated part of the building is suitable and safe to be occupied. The occupation certificate must be obtained from the principal certifying authority (PCA) prior to the occupation of a new building or part of a building, and also prior to commencing any change in the building’s use.
Prior to issuing an occupation certificate, the PCA must be satisfied that the construction works satisfy certain legislative requirements, such as the Building Code of Australia and that the building or nominated part of the building is suitable for occupation. Key considerations are structural adequacy, fire safety and the health, safety and amenity of future occupants of the building.
What other obligations does the PCA have?
Your PCA is a public official and has responsibilities and a duty of care in relation to the advice they provide and action they take. Their work must satisfy the requirements of the NSW planning legislation. Your PCA is subject to a code of conduct and auditing by the Building Professionals Board, as well as anti-corruption provisions and the standards required of public authorities under NSW legislation. Your PCA is required to avoid conflicts of interest and can only exercise their functions if covered by professional indemnity insurance.
What work will my PCA do?
Your PCA will:
- Inspect building work during the course of construction
- Advise whether any changes need to be made so that the work is fit to occupy or use in accordance with the Building Code of Australia
- Issue interim or final occupation certificates (building work) or issue a subdivision certificate (subdivision work)
The PCA, or another accredited certifier approved by the PCA, will undertake certain mandatory inspections of the work at different stages during construction – the required inspections should be set out in the agreement you have signed with the PCA. Your builder must advise the PCA when the building work reaches the stage where the inspections need to be undertaken. The PCA should advise you and the builder of any issues identified during an inspection.
The PCA may require compliance certificates or expert reports at different stages of construction (for example, a structural engineer’s certificate for building footings). While they may rely on these certificates when issuing an interim or final occupation certificate, they, or another certifying authority agreed to by the PCA, must always undertake mandatory inspections on site.
City Building Approvals Pty Ltd
PO Box 4426
Shellharbour Village NSW 2529
T – (02) 4257 5326
E – firstname.lastname@example.org
0413 963 094
0413 843 408
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