Frequently Asked Questions

What building works don’t require a consent?

Typical works exempt from requiring a building consent are like-for-like replacement of building elements (e.g. replacing roofing with the same type of roofing if it is older than 15 years etc). Check out the full list of exempt works to see if you need a building consent.

How much is a building consent going to cost me?

The cost of the consent is dependent on the cost of the work to be done.  A typical calculation of the fee you are to pay can be done using this formula:

Base Fee for category + DBH Levy + BRANZ Levy + Accreditation Levy + Extra inspection/s fee (if any). See the Building Fees and Charges page for details. 

In some cases the actual costs of a project may exceed the estimated base fee due to complexity and additional inspections may be requested. At the end of the project if the actual costs have significantly exceeded the base fee, an invoice for the additional costs will be sent and are required to be paid in full before a Code Compliance Certificate can be issued.

If the value of the work is over $20,000, DBH and BRANZ levies must be added. The accreditation levy applies to all building consents.

I want to lodge a building consent. What do I need to do?

To lodge your building consent you will need:

  • Your application form.
  • Plans (two full sets).
  • Specifications (two copies). These are detailed written instructions outlining work to be done and materials to be used.
  • Fees (where possible the building officer will assess the number of inspections required and invoice these, payment is required before the building consent is issued).
  • Application checklist (provided with the form).

Bring this information in to the Civic Centre or post to NPDC, Private Bag 2025, New Plymouth 4340.

All building work must comply with the New Plymouth District Plan and the Resource Management Act (RMA) 1991.  If it does not, you may require a resource consent which is a separate application and will require additional information.  Please note that if that building consent is issued, work cannot begin until the resource consent has also been approved.  We recommend that at the same time as applying for your building consent you also apply for a Project Information Memorandum (PIM).  A PIM will tell you, amongst other things, whether a resource consent will be required.  Applying for a PIM at the start of the process can prevent any further delays down the track.

A building consent for food premises (e.g. cafés, takeaways, restaurants, bars, etc.), hairdressing salons, and other types of businesses that require registration, also require approval from the Environmental Health Team under various pieces of legislation, and can be assessed concurrently while your building consent is being processed.  Further information on additional regulations and licences that may be required for compliance purposes can be found on the Regulations and Licences page.


How long will it take to get a building consent?

We have 20 working days to issue a decision on your building consent application. If any information is required to confirm compliance with the Building Code, the clock will stop until the information is received. You can contact us to find out the status of your application - make sure you have the consent number or property address handy. For details see our Building Consent Process page.

Please note building work cannot start until the building consent has been issued.

How long do I have after receiving the building consent to start work?

You have 12 months to start building from the date your consent is issued otherwise your consent will lapse and you will need to reapply. Please contact us if you think you may need to extend this time, a fee may apply.

How long do I have to complete the work?

You have two years from the date the building consent is granted. Contact us if you need to have this extended, a fee may apply.

I would like to make changes to my building consent. What do I need to do?

You need to complete the Application for Building Consent Amendment form and include two copies of the plans. Any additional fees for altering your building consent will apply.

How do I book an inspection?

Give us a call on 06-759 6060 to book your inspection. Make sure you have your building consent number handy. We need at least 24 hours notice but will try and fit your inspection in within three days.

I’ve finished building, now what?

To enable us to issue the required Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) you need to let us know when the work is completed. An application for a CCC is included in your building consent pack. Drop this form off to us when all building work is completed and we’ll set up a final inspection. Make sure you let us know:

  • Building consent number.
  • Contact name.
  • Phone number.
  • Location address.
  • Preferred day of inspection.
  • Morning or afternoon.

Why is the Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) not issued at the final inspection?

Upon completion and approval of the final inspection your building consent and CCC application will undergo a final audit and fees check. This audit may show information missing from the building consent (e.g. producer statement, gas or electrical certificates or adjustments made without amendments). We will not issue a CCC until every aspect of your building consent is signed off.

Also, one of the requirements for issuing a CCC is the payment of all fees and charges. This requirement is under Local Government Act 2002, section 208 and Building Act 2004, section 95.

How long before you issue the Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) for my building works?

CCCs must be processed within 20 working days of receiving your application. If we need more information or documentation from you, we will stop the clock until the information is received.

What is a waiver on a building consent?

You can apply to waive certain requirements of the Building Code so that a building consent may be issued even though it does not comply, e.g. a firewall along a boundary wall that is alongside a right of way. You need to declare on your building consent application what part of the building code you are applying for a waiver or modification. . 

The previous owners of our house built something without a building consent. How do I get it checked and/or recorded in Council’s records?

If the work was done after July 1992 you will need to apply for a Certificate of Acceptance. The building work will be assessed against current Building Code requirements. 

If the work was done before July 1992, you need to apply for Registration of Unpermitted/Unrecorded Work. We may inspect the work, especially where there is a possibility of safety or sanitary issues. 

My neighbour is building a structure that I think requires a consent. Can the Council do anything about this?

We can check and ascertain whether the work being done by your neighbour does require a consent or not. If it does, then we can request the owner to stop work until the matter is resolved. Please contact us with the address and building work details. 

My neighbour’s stormwater is coming from their property onto ours. What can we do?

If building work has not been carried out recently on the property or if it is not Council-owned then unfortunately this is a private issue between neighbours.

If the property or pipes responsible for the stormwater overflow are Council-owned then let us know and we’ll get one of our team to check it out.

If the property has recently had building work carried out we will see if there is a building consent and see if the building work has been finished (e.g. the downpipes may not have been connnected). 

Where are my boundary pegs? Do you have any records with my boundary on it?

The only way to find the true boundary is to contact a Registered Surveyor, however, we can let you know the approximate distances from one boundary to another. Just give us a call on 06-759 6060 or pop in to the Civic Centre or one of the service centres.

What are the fencing requirements for a swimming pool?

You can read all the requirements on our Swimming Pools page.

I’ve got a letter saying my pool does not comply. What do I do now?

Until the works stated in the letter are rectified, the pool needs to be made safe (by emptying it to a level of 400mm or less). Once the works are completed, contact us to book an inspection.