CCC Applications for Historical Building Consents

Not everyone applies for their Code Compliance Certificate at the end of their project build. 

Sometimes people don't realise it's their responsibility to request a CCC, others might think their builder will take care of it.  Some projects are never finished or people simply forget to submit their application. Whatever the reason it can lead to significant problems when you go to sell your property or re-finance it.

Many home-owners who discover they don’t have a CCC find themselves in a stressful situation when they lodge their application. There is often a lack of understanding that obtaining a CCC is not a straightforward rubber-stamping process. QLDC has to undertake a number of due diligence checks to ensure on reasonable grounds that the building work is compliant. 

When a significant period of time has passed since the build completion the CCC processing is even more complex. The Building Code has specific time periods set out for durability of materials and building elements. The longer that building work has been left before applying for a CCC, the harder it is to determine whether these minimum time periods will be complied with. In cases where the building work is already 5 or more years old, elements of the work may have already exceeded their expected durability or manufacturer’s warranty. 

To help you through the process of applying for CCCs for historical Building Consents, we've creating a new guidance document. Within this you will find information that explains the following:  

  • Applications can be refused due to lack of information about the building construction. In such cases an independent “suitably qualified” building consultant may need to be engaged to undertake a full inspection of your building (e.g. remove wall claddings) and confirm that the construction complies with the building code
  • For building consents over 5 years old a B2 Durability Modification Application (AF 23.1) will need to be completed. This is a declaration in which the owner acknowledges that the durability timeframe for the building elements has been reduced due to the delays with the CCC application.

Download: Code Compliance Certificates for Historical Building Consents (725KB) (NEW)

 

All CCC applications for historical building consents need to be evaluated carefully.  While the goal is to arrive at a successful outcome for the applicant, there may be situations where we cannot be satisfied that the building work complies.

 

B2 Durability Modification

The Building Code has specific time periods set out for durability of various elements of construction. The longer building work is left before applying for a CCC, the harder it is to determine whether these minimum time periods will be complied with. In cases where the building work is already 5 or more years old elements of the work may have already exceeded their expected durability or manufacturer’s warranty.

For most Historical Building Consent CCC applications the owner will be asked to complete a B2 Durability Modification Application form. This is a declaration that is signed off by the owner and QLDC to acknowledge that the durability timeframe for the building elements has been reduced due to the delays associated with applying for a CCC.

Download: AF23.1 B2 Durability Modification Application Form (256KB) (NEW)

 

Independent Inspection Report

Historical Building consents often involve work that was completed long ago with little evidence as to whether it was completed correctly.  If adequate records are not available to verify the quality of construction then an invasive level of inspection may be required. This could for example involve the removal of wall panels or external wall cladding. QLDC cannot undertake this level of invasive assessment , therefore we may be unable to approve your Final Inspection. If the homeowner wishes to they may seek to obtain evidence that the building work is compliant through obtaining a building inspection report from an  independent "suitably qualified" building consultant.

QLDC does not endorse or recommend any specific Building Consultants. However the qualifications of any selected consultant will be assessed when they submit their technical assessment report. As an owner you should investigate before acquiring the services of a consultant to ensure they are suitably qualified. Key considerations should include:

  • They must have significant knowledge of the Building Act and NZ Building Code
  • They must be experienced in key areas of building design, construction or inspection specifically around weathertightness and structure
  • They must also be able to undertake invasive testing
  • They should have a suitable qualification, professional registration or industry association e.g:
    • RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors)
    • NZIBS (New Zealand Institute of Building Surveyors)
    • CPENG (Chartered Professional Engineer)
    • BOINZ (Building Official Institute of NZ)

For further information on these requirements along with example case studies please see the above guidance document. 

 

Building Code Changes

For building consents that were issued under the Building Act 1991 (prior to 31 March 2005), the test which must be applied when considering whether to issue a CCC is whether the building work concerned complies with the building code that applied at the time the building consent was granted. This means if the building code has subsequently been amended since the building consent was granted it is not mandatory to have upgraded to that new requirement in order to obtain a CCC.

For building consents issued under the Building Act 2004 (after 31 March 2005) the substantial test is that building work complies with the consent documentation. This test therefore also means it applies to the code at the time the work was consented.