Building Permits

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If you’re planning to build, it is likely that you will require a building permit. Our building surveyors are incredibly skilled, motivated, and above all, hands-on professionals, working with clients across Victoria. 

Whether you are employing an architect, building designer or draftsperson, engaging with KWA Building Permits will ease your mind that your build will meet the Australian standards and legislations. 

We are here to review and guide you in the right direction with the consultants you may need to engage, ensuring your projects to run smoothly as possible, saving you time and money.

We’re here to cross all the t’s and dot all the i’s for your building permits, including:

Review areas of non-compliance.

Navigate legislation, regulations, National Construction code and Australian standards.

Time and patience to check, (and re-check), all of the details.

Z62 1831

Statutory Functions

A building permit is required for almost all building works in Victoria. At KWA Building Permits, we provide a high level of professional building permit services to builders, architects, draftspersons, developers and owner-builders.

Our statutory building permits, reports and functions will ensure that your new construction, renovation or extension will be safe, secure, and compliant in accordance with the Building Act, Building Regulations, National Construction Code & Associated Australian Standards Victoria wide.

Building works cannot commence without first obtaining a building permit listed as an exemption within the building regulations and equally a building or part of a building cannot be occupied without first obtaining an Occupancy Permit.

Being a statutory authority, we are bound by the legislated code of conduct in that we are not permitted to be part of the design process or project management equiveillance.

At KWA Building Permits, we understand the clear distinction between consultancy opposed to statutory services and we pride ourselves on offering a service which is unique, ethical and professional.

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Once you have began the application process for a building permit, you have access to the very particular (and some might say peculiar) expertise of the industry’s leading building surveyors.

Whatever questions, issues and challenges you may face throughout the entirety of your building project and beyond, we are here to provide ongoing advice and consultation services.

No matter the aspect of building legislation, or regulations that you need assistance with, please get in touch with our team of experts.

Building Permit FAQs

To expedite your building permit process, we recommend finalising your design prior to engaging our services, even minor alterations may cause a flow on effect and require multiple consultants to revise their documentation.

It is important to consult with your design team and ensure all documents are prepared “for construction” and are not preliminary. In addition, confirm all relevant planning and reporting authority matters have been addressed.

It is recommended to engage your Architect or Draftsperson to act as your agent to guide you through your Building Permit process. By submitting a complete application, it ensures we are able to provide the best service with a timely outcome for our clients.

Typically, it is quite clear whether a town planning permit is required for a project or not.

Most of the time, we are able to assess the relevant planning zone and overlay requirements against your proposed design to ascertain whether it will trigger the requirement for a town planning permit. However, it is not always as simple as it seems.

Some properties may be burdened by an existing town planning permit with conditions requiring an update to this permit. It is for this reason we request general written planning advice, a letter from your councils planning department confirming the outcome.

Your municipality’s planning department can assist in obtaining this advice, although most municipalities offer an online application process.

By obtaining a general planning letter early in your design process it ensures you are aware of your town planning requirements and prevents unexpected delays to your project.

You can fill out the application form on the KWA website here.

The most common delays in the Building Permit process are:

  • Town Planning Approvals
    Lack of research going into your design can cause delays such as not knowing if you need a planning permit and delaying the approval process.
  • Report & Consents
    Approval with relevant responsible authorities, e.g.: flood consent or siting approvals. These approvals can take anywhere from 4-8 weeks despite the approval authority typically bound by a statutory time frame, this is not always followed by your relevant council.
  • Design Changes
    Changes to the building design will cause delays to the project for obvious reasons, including the need to potentially obtain revised or new council approvals and/or report and consents from the relevant authorities.

Firstly, you need to engage a registered draftsperson or architect to create your proposed building design, we would suggest engaging their services as your agent as they will then co-ordinate the associated parties like energy raters, structural engineers (if applicable), geo-technical reports etc.

Once the design is at a level where no more changes are required, we then suggest you or your agent then apply to our office for the building permit, lastly, I just want to highlight that having one point of contact is extremely important to ensure your building permit process is as smooth and efficient as possible.

If you have any more questions, please feel free to give any of us a call to discuss in more detail.

The best way to ensure your building permit is approved prior to your project commencement date, is to book an appointment with our office to establish the minimum level of documentation required for your specific project however with the right design team on board that should all be organised before you require our services.

Schedule 3 of building regulations list when a Building Permit is not required. The bottom line is that almost everything needs a Building Permit. About 20 years ago, there was an exemption for works that cost below $5000, but now this is not the case and no such exemption exists.

If you are unsure about whether or not a Building Permit would be required, please give our team a call and we can help you.

You must apply to our office with the following:

  • A signed application form 1 & Relevant Building Surveyor appointment form.
  • Application fee as per your signed fee proposal agreement.

Sufficient documentation, including but not limited to architectural drawings, specifications, structural drawings (if required), soil report, title documentation, energy reports (if required), Bushfire attack level report (if required) etc.

Building permits exist to protect and ensure the integrity of buildings, as well as the safety of occupants and the general public. They are also part of a system that seeks to consistently regulate and enforce the minimum standard required by the legislation.

Our time frames are tailored to suit your needs. With a well prepared application, compliant drawings and all other associated documentation, we can assess a building permit application generally within 2-2.5 weeks. However, this can vary, so please contact us for an accurate timeline appropriate for your project.

Building permits are documents issued by a building surveyor prior to the building works commencing. A Building Permit signifies that a building surveyor has examined all relevant documentation pertaining to a proposed building and approved it in relation to all relevant legislation, building codes, and regulations within their jurisdiction.

If you are building any kind of structure in Victoria it is likely you will require a building permit. There are some exemptions, but not many. To clarify whether you need a building permit for your proposed project, contact us.

There are severe penalties in Victoria for building without a permit.