You may have heard you need to get a building approval to start works on a shed, carport or other structure. But, did you know you don’t have to go through council to get your building approval? Private certifiers inspect and approve building work to make sure it complies with the approved building plans and appropriate building standards including the Sustainable Planning Act 2009, the Building Code of Australia, Building Act 1975, specific building legislation and South Australia’s building and plumbing regulations.
What does a private certifier do?
- They assess and approve plans for new building work or alterations/additions.
- They inspect the mandatory stages of building work. For example, a basic house will require four inspections: Slab Stage, Bond Beam Stage, Frame Stage, and Final Stage.
- They issue enforcement notices when needed.
- They issue a final certificate once the building works have been completed and deemed satisfactory.
Why should I use a private certifier instead of council?
- Private certifiers tend to be a bit faster than council for getting approvals through if there aren’t any planning issues.
- Private certifiers assist you with all aspects of your application.
- They are only a phone call/email away if you have questions pertaining to your approval.
- We wade through the bureaucratic quagmire on behalf of the client and provide the most efficient and cost effective outcome.
- We’re not council.
If I use a private certifier, how will council know my building work is approved?
Private certifiers are independent of local government and take full responsibility for the work that they certify. The private certifier will issue the approval and see the project through to its final outcome with no input from council. With every application, you will need to fill out a Notice of Engagement Form. This is a written contract between you and the certifier. A notice of engagement is then sent to the relevant council to inform them you are working with a private certifier on your building application. Certifiers are also responsible for lodging building approvals and final certificates with council for records purposes only.
What are building certifiers NOT responsible for?
- Booking in inspections (an owner or builder must let the private certifier know at least 24 hours before they need an inspection, otherwise they don’t know when you are ready to have a stage inspected)
- Quality control
- Ensuring a builder is complying with the contract
- Supervising the job site