Why was it introduced?
The Government introduced new exemptions to the Building Act intended to speed up minor building work. They are designed to reduce red tape, decrease compliance costs for property owners and improve the productivity of the construction sector.
The exemptions are just one part of the Government's broader building system reform programme designed to assist the country's recovery from Covid-19.
What is covered?
Council-approved building consents will no longer be required on low-risk building work. We are talking about single-storey detached buildings (uninhabited rooms) of up to 30 square metres, which will cover sheds, garages, carports, sleep-outs (with no bathroom nor kitchen facilities) and similar such.
What's the catch?
Even though a building consent is not required, the exemptions 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.
All exempt building work will still need to comply with the Building Code.
For more information as well as technical guidance, please visit Building System Performance's website
MBIE is developing an online tool that will help homeowners better identify what building work does or doesn't need a building consent and what rules they need to follow. This should be available later this year.