There is not much that does not require a building permit.

Additions and alterations that modify the shape or structure of a building, including but not limited to demolishing or installing new internal walls, adding new door openings or windows all require a permit. Permits are also required new structure additions such as pergolas, carports and decks.

Building permits are enforced to ensure compliance with building codes and therefore the safety of occupants and reduction of potential health and safety risks.

Undertaking works without a permit may lead to receipt of a Building Notice, which can become and costly and drawn out process.

Building Notice

A building notice is the first step in the enforcement processes available to the Municipal Building Surveyor at Council. Where the building department becomes aware of building works being carried out without the required permits on a property that could affect the health and safety of the public and/or occupiers, a building notice can be issued requiring the property owner to ‘show cause’ why:

1. the building/works should not be demolished and/or reinstated
2. the use of the building should not be prohibited.

How Establish if a Permit is Required

It is always in your best interest to seek clarification as to whether a permit is required. This can be done via local council or a registered building surveyor.

Common Types of Work Requiring Permits (but not limited to) 

Additions

  • Additions to a dwelling or any other building.

Alterations

  • Structural alterations to a dwelling or any other building.
  • Removal of or alteration to a load-bearing part or a part contributing to the support of a building. (e.g. a wall supporting a ceiling and /or roof propping or required for bracing the structure against wind or movement).

Carports/garages

  • Construction of a garage/carport.

Decks

  • Attached to a building irrespective of size or forming part of a swimming pool surround.
  • Detached timber deck constructed as part of the amenity of a dwelling.

Fences

  • Construction of a side or boundary fence more than 2m high.
  • Construction of a fence that is more than 1.0m high, within 9m of the point of intersection of street alignments.

Masts/antennas/satellite dishes

  • Height more than 3m above the highest point of a building.
  • Not attached to a building and height more than 8m above the ground.

Re-blocking

  • Re-blocking, restumping or underpinning of an existing building.

Retaining Walls

  • Constructed on or near site boundaries where there is a risk of damage to adjoining property.
  • Construction of a retaining wall 1m or more in height

Roofing

  • Replacement of corrugated iron roofing with concrete or terracotta roofing tiles.
  • Replacement of concrete or terracotta roofing tiles with corrugated iron roofing.
  • Replacement of corrugated iron roofing with another pre-finished metal sheeting which requires the installation of structural battens.

Sheds

  • Erection of a shed more than 10m² in area.

Swimming pool

  • Construction of a swimming pool/or spa and associated safety pool barriers.

Verandahs

  • Construction of a verandah attached to any building.

Windows

  • Installation of windows, where structural alterations are required

Repair, Renewal or Maintenance
Repair, renewal or maintenance of a part of an existing building is exempt from the requirement to obtain a building permit provided the building work:

  • will not adversely affect the structural soundness of the building, will not increase or decrease the floor area or height of the building and is not underpinning or replacement of footings and does not include the removal or alteration of any element of the building that is contributing to the support of any other element of the building; and
  • uses materials commonly used for the same purpose as the material being replaced;
  • will not adversely affect the safety of the public or occupiers of the building; and
  • will not adversely affect an essential safety measure relating to the building.