Farmer Freddy's renovation plans

Farmer Freddy learns about the changes to the Building Act.

With things on the farm under control, Freddy had been thinking about doing some renovations to the house.

He had big plans for the bathroom ... new doors for the dining room, the wall in the lounge had to go and he might extend the front deck.

He had pulled a bunch of tools out and was thinking about where to get started when Pebbles arrived.

"Gosh dad, this looks interesting" says Pebbles. "What are you up to?"

"I am getting started on some renovations" says Freddy filling Pebbles in over a cup of tea.

"Whoa, hold on dad" says Pebbles. "You know there have been a bunch of changes to the Building Act recently".

"There have?" questioned Freddy.

"Yes, from 1 March 2012 critical building work (known as Restricted Building Work or RBW) must be done or supervised by a Licenced Building Practitioner (LBP). This applies to most residential building work or renovation work. This change was one of several that were made to the Building Act 2004 to encourage better building design and construction" explains Pebbles.

"So how do I know what is Restricted Building Work?" Freddy asks.

"Restricted Building Work is design and building work that is critical to the integrity of a residential building to make sure the building is not compromised. It also relates to the building being structurally sound and weather tight, that's why it can only be done or supervised by tradespeople who are Licenced Building Practitioners.

Under the Building Act 2004 the Department of Building and Housing established the Licenced Building Practitioner Scheme. The Scheme sets out a regulated process where skilled and qualified building practitioners demonstrate their ability to meet industry competencies in order to obtain the status of being a Licence Building Practitioner.

The reason that only a Licenced Building Practitioner may complete the work is to ensure that critical design and building work is carried out or supervised by competent persons and to also ensure that those persons can be held to account if this work ends up being not up to standard.

The best thing to do is to give the Council a call and discuss the work you are intending doing and find out if it needs consent and if it is Restricted Building Works. There is often building that requires a building consent but isn't necessarily Restricted Building Work. It is always best to check these things out" Pebbles warns.

"Ok" says Freddy, "I better give the Council a call".


The content of this document is necessarily general and readers should seek specific advice on particular matters and not rely solely on this document.
If you would like more information on any of the topics in this document, please contact your usual Auld Brewer Mazengarb & McEwen adviser.
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