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Is my Project Exempt from Building Consent? - 17th Jul 2018

Building Consent Exemption

While most building work will require a Building Consent, there are exceptions. Schedule 1 of the Building Act allows exemptions for building work that is considered low-risk. A Schedule 1 exemption does not mean, however, that you can are free from all regulations - the work must still comply with the Building Code. Small structures and renovations often do not require consent, saving you time and money in the building process, but must meet other standards. Some common examples of exempt building work are:

Sleepouts and sheds

There are several requirements that must still be met to be exempt from building consent. These regulations also apply to ready-made buildings for installation by a builder.

  • Single storey and no larger than 10m²
  • Height of the sleepout/shed determines where it can go on your property. It cannot be closer to a boundary or your home than the sleepout is tall
  • No cooking, drinking water or bathroom facilities allowed
  • The facilities of a main house must be accessible
  • Sleeping areas must have smoke alarms installed
  • Meets district plan

Porches, verandas and carports

  • On or attached to an existing building
  • On the ground floor or first storey
  • Smaller than 20m²
  • Doesn’t overhang public area i.e. alleyway, courtyard
  • If completely closing in an existing veranda or porch, must be smaller than 5m²

Other exempt work includes:

  • Decks, private play equipment and treehouses that meet height restrictions and safety regulations
  • Garden pergolas (no roof), house awnings, shade sails, and most temporary lightweight structures like a marquee
  • Small repairs, replacement and renovations – i.e. replacing rotten cladding or piles, replacing most doors and windows, most insulation, cosmetic changes like new floor coverings, new gib etc
  • Altering internal walls, unless they are load-bearing, a bracing element, firewall, or masonry wall (i.e. brick, blocks)
  • Altering doorways or installing ramps to allow access for people with disabilities
  • Repair or replacement of outbuilding same size or smaller, in same place
  • Some garden retaining walls and fences (not pool fences)

All exempt works have exceptions where consent will be required. As there are so many exceptions, it pays to talk to us first about your plans.

Exemption 2 in Dunedin and Otago

If your planned building work is not covered by the Schedule 1 exemptions, you may still be able to get an exemption, as long as the work still meets the Building Code. “Exemption 2” gives the councils the power to decide if you need building consent or not.

You can apply for an Exemption 2 via the relevant Council. In Dunedin and Otago, this is the responsibility of the Dunedin City Council or the Otago Regional Council.The first step is to discuss your plans with the council and then make a formal application for exemption. The DCC or ORC will then decide if you need consent or not.

For example, you want to reclad your Dunedin home. A simple “like for like” change does not need consent. As soon as you make a major change, however, such as to a different type of cladding material (i.e. timber to fibre cement weatherboard) you will require a Building Consent. This is a time when you may like to apply for an Exemption 2 from the Dunedin City Council.

Edward White Builders for Building Consent and Exemption Advice 

Talk to us first when you are planning your project. At Edward White Builders, we are fully aware of all Building Code and Dunedin City Council rules and regulations, and can advise you of what applies to your project. It is best to talk to us early in the process so we can help you avoid any delays that will cost you time and money.

  • Check the DCC website here to see if you need consent
  • For more information about Building Consent exemptions, check out this guide

Contact Edward White Builders today to discuss your project.

 

 

When Do I Need a Building Consent in Dunedin? - 11th Jan 2018

Edward White Builders are here to help when it comes to home renovations or new builds and can offer you sound advice on the building consent application process through Dunedin City Council, along with expectations around time frames and budgeting constraints when it comes to your build.

You need to apply for a building consent with the DCC before building; a new house, commercial building, and before doing any building work such as structural work, plumbing, drainage work and alterations or before relocating an existing building to a new section. Most building, plumbing and drainage work requires a building consent.

Examples (but not limited to):

  • Structural building – additions, alterations, re-piling, demolition
  • Relocating a building
  • Installing a solid fuel burner
  • Installing or altering a specific system (lifesaving feature)
  • Fences or walls higher than 2.5 metres, and all swimming pool fences
  • Retaining walls higher than 1.5 metres
  • Decks, platforms or bridges more than 1.5 metres above ground level
  • Sheds greater than 10 square metres in floor area
  • Marquees over 100 square metres

Without a building consent, you may be liable for a fine, have difficulty selling in the future, or getting insurance, and nobody wants that. If in doubt, contact the DCC Building Services staff. When it comes to new builds, additions and alterations, fences and decks, we’re here to help, and can work with you through the building process from start to finish. We advise you to call your builder as early as possible in the building process, to get key advice from the beginning.

You can find out more on the DCC Website. Contact Edward White Builders.

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