Construction Certificates

After a development application is approved, a Construction Certificate is needed before building actually begins. A Construction Certificate is an approval that ensures compliance with the Building Code of Australia (BCA), the consent and any conditions.

A Construction Certificate can be issued by Council or a private Accredited Certifier. If issued by a private Accredited Certifier, a copy of the certificate, associated plans and specifications must be forwarded to Council within two days after the date of determination.

Before work commences, a Principal Certifier (PC) must be appointed to carry out mandatory inspections, with the primary aim of obtaining an Occupation Certificate. The PC can be either Council or a private Accredited Certifier, however this must be made known to Council at least two days before building starts.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I apply for a construction certificate?

You will need to complete an application form, provide owners consent and lodge all supporting documentation. Only the person having the benefit of the development consent is eligible to make an application for a construction certificate.

What fees are payable?

Upon the issue of development consent, Council will supply a fee proposal outlining the costs for using Council as an Accredited Certifier and/or Principal Certifying Authority. Written quotations can also be provided. Our rates are competitive and inspections can be done on minimal notice.

What if all the detailed design work is not yet finished?

You may find that all information you need is not available at the time you apply, e,g. structural, mechanical or hydraulic designs may not yet be finalised.

When the detail is not available, you can state in the specification your intent to comply with requirements by identifying the specific clauses in the BCA and Australian standards, codes or other documents, with a brief description of the how you propose to comply with each.

Once issued, can a construction certificate be altered?

Clause 79IA of the EP&A Regulation permits the person who has applied for a construction certificate to apply for it to be modified, or for a new construction certificate to be issued. The application and assessment process is the same as for the original application. Consent does not need to be modified, providing the plans are consistent with the development consent.

What is a fire safety schedule?

A fire safety schedule is a list specifying the fire safety measures (both current and proposed) that should be implemented in the building premises. It is issued with construction certificates, complying development certificates, fire safety orders and development consents for a change of building use where no building work is proposed. It relates to commercial, industrial and multi unit development.

When is the PC required to do inspections of the building?

The PC is required to do inspections at the start of the project to ensure correct site management and sediment erosion controls are in place as well as waterproofing of wet areas, external balconies and planter boxes, framing, pool fencing, fire safety measures, hydraulic connections, and a final inspection. Other certification from suitably qualified persons such as structural engineers, fire safety consultants, hydraulic engineers, mechanical engineers, electricians, surveyors and other building professionals can also be requested. Council building certifiers will provide an electronic report following each inspection. Failing to have a mandatory inspection carried out will result in the PC not being able to issue the required occupation certificate at the completion of work. For inspection bookings please call 02 9777 1000.

When can I move into my building?

Before you can move into your building the PC must issue you with an Occupation Certificate.

When can I get my security deposit back from Council?

If you paid a footpath damage deposit, Council will arrange to have the deposit refunded provided there is no damage to Council's infrastructure and all work has been completed.

What are the benefits in using Council as an Accredited Certifier and Principal Certifier?

  • Council Certifiers are independent to ensure the building is compliant in the interests of the owner.
  • Local, experienced, courteous and accessible.
  • The offices do not close down and the functions are ongoing, without business closure.
  • Competitive rates, with efficiency

pdf format Why choose a Willoughby Council Building Certifier?