A Construction Certificate is the approval required to actually undertake building/construction works and must be obtained before works commence.
Any Development Consent issued that involves building/construction works will require a Construction Certificate before the work can commence.
A Construction Certificate essentially certifies that the detailed construction plans and specifications for the development are consistent with the Development Consent and comply with the Building Code of Australia (BCA).
The Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 provides for combined applications where a development consent and construction certificate may be issued together by Council. Although this option is available for any project requiring both a Development Consent and a Construction Certificate, it is not recommended for more significant types of development or subdivisions.
To obtain a construction certificate a full set of working drawings must be submitted. If these are prepared before any planning issues are resolved (i.e. before development consent is obtained) plans may have to be redrawn to comply with the Development Consent before a Construction Certificate can be issued. This will result in additional cost to you.
A Construction Certificate is not required for work covered by a Complying Development Certificate or development that Council considers exempt.
What is a Principal Certifying Authority?
A Principal Certifying Authority (PCA) is appointed to make sure development work is completed under the terms of any Development Consent or Complying Development Certificate and the Building Code of Australia.
You need to appoint a Principal Certifying Authority when you carry out work that is the subject of a Construction Certificate or a Complying Development Certificate.
Council or an accredited Private Certifier can act as your Principal Certifying Authority. This involves the relevant body's appointment as the Principal Certifying Authority (PCA) who is then responsible for monitoring the building works at specific times during construction and issuing the Occupancy Certificate on completion of works. A PCA must be appointed before building works can commence.
Please ring our customer service staff on 02 6023 8111 and check our services and competitive fee structure. To appoint AlburyCity as the PCA, simply tick yes in the appropriate section of the Development Application form.
Your Principal Certifying Authority is to advise Council of his or her appointment and you are also to advise Council of your intention to commence any proposed building work at least two working days prior to commencement.
How do I make application?
It is important to provide all necessary documentation at the time of lodgement. This will ensure the application is processed and approved in the shortest amount of time possible. If the information is not provided, your application may not be accepted. A Construction Certificate application must include
- A completed Application Form
- Four (4) copies of A4 or A3 size Plans (drawn to scale) are required (Larger plans may be requested). The plans should include:
- Locality Plan
- Site Plan indicating all levels, existing structures and vegetation
- Plans or drawings of the proposal showing elevations and sections
- Preliminary engineering drawings (for subdivision work).
- Scaled plan of the existing buildings (for building alterations
- A specification sufficient to detail the materials to be used to construct the building. Download a guide for preparing plans.
- Four (4) copies of other relevant documents (soil test, engineers computations/specifications, wind rating)
- Four (4) copies of a BASIX Certificate (for new residential work only) www.basix.nsw.gov.au
- Full payment of fees (this may include the collection of the Building & Construction Industry Long Service Levy)
Builders Home Warranty Insurance Certificate if works are domestic in nature and valued above $12,000 or if the construction is to be done by the Owner, an Owner Builders Permit if the works are above $5,000. www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au
Applications and accompanying documents can be lodged in person or can be mailed to AlburyCity at 553 Kiewa Street, Albury NSW 2640. Council aims to approve a Construction Certificate within 15 working days of lodgement, however if the application is a combined Development Consent and Construction Certificate the process time will be 20 working days.
Approval time is dependent on:
- The completeness of the application
- That the application does not need to be referred to an external authority for information
- Appropriate access to the particular premises for inspection
- The compliance with the relevant legislation, Council codes and policies at that time
We will contact you if:
- Further information is required
- The development plans and details do not meet the conditions of Development Consent
- Your proposal is being recommended for refusal
With the approval of the Construction Certificate, the PCA specifies stages during construction that must be inspected. These are noted as 'Critical Stage Inspections'. The applicant or builder must notify the PCA and arrange an inspection at the required stage.
Note: A Final Occupation Certificate will not be issued unless all critical stage inspections have been completed.
Construction Certificates for Commercial/Industrial Work
All new commercial and industrial developments must provide access and toilet facilities for people with disabilities, these must comply with Part D3 of the Building Code of Australia.
In providing suitable car parking for any commercial or industrial development again, provision is to be made for the disabled.
All applications involving commercial or industrial work must include a list of proposed fire safety measures, as well as a separate list of any existing fire safety measures. Both lists must describe the extent, capability and basis of design for each of the measures.
HOW Insurance Certificate/Owner Builders Permit
The Home Building Act 1989 requires builders and tradespeople to be licensed for the work that they do, and to have proper contracts and insurance in place for most jobs. The insurance covers the property for faulty workmanship for six years after construction has been completed. For construction valued above $12,000 the builder is requried to obtain Home Owner Warranty (HOW) Insurance and submit a copy to Council prior to the release of the Construction Certificate.
If the works are to be done by the owner, then an Owner Builder permit may be required. An Owner Builder assumes the role and responsibility of the builder and holds a permit to do that work. The work may involve supervising, coordinating, construction of, or alteration, repair or addition to a dwelling. Where the market value of the work is:
- $0-$5,000 an Owner Builder Permit is not required
- $5,000 - $12,000 an Owner Builder Permit is required and can be applied for at the Department of Fair Trading
- $12,000 and above the Owner Builder is required to complete an education course (Riverina Institute of Tafe) or training approved by the Commissioner of the Office of Fair Trading and lodge the Owner Builder Permit and copy of the certificate attained with Council.
The Department of Fair Trading can be contacted for information on Owner Builder Permits www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au
From 1 May 2006, all NSW residents must have at least one working smoke alarm installed on each level of their home. This includes owner occupied, rental properties, relocatable homes or any other residential building where people sleep.
For more information, visit www.fire.nsw.gov.au/community/athome/smokealarms/
Modification of a Construction Certificate
A proposal may be modified after a Construction Certificate has been issued. Depending on the extent of the changes this may require modification of the original Consent triggering the need for re-assessment and possibly re-notification. It is recommended that you discuss any changes with a Council Building / Planning Officer as soon as you realise a need for changes to the approved plans.
IMPORTANTYou must not proceed with unauthorised changes until they have been properly assessed and approved as there may be legal consequences!