Frequently Asked Questions

Questions

1. I’m wanting to build on my property (house, extensions, carport etc) what is the process?
2. What building work/s do I need a building permit for?
3. How close can I build to the boundaries?
4. Am I able to build closer than the required boundary setbacks?
5. To raise & build-in underneath my house, what should I be aware of?
6. Why do I need a height certificate from a land surveyor?
7. I have received a form 22 in the mail, what does this mean?
8
. What are Form 15′s & Form 16′s for?
9. What is BSA insurance?
10. What is Portable Long Service Leave- Qleave?
11. I’m having problems with my builder- (not completing the work, it’s faulty work) what do I do?
12. Am I able to change my plans after they have been approved?
13. How long do I have to complete the building work?
14. How much detail needs to be on the plans?
15. Can I come to your office & speak to the certifier?

Answers

1. I’m wanting to build on my property (house, extensions, carport etc) what is the process?

  • Contact a licensed draftsperson, who will draw your plans to the current rules & regulations within your council region. Discuss with the draftsperson if a Development Application (DA) or engineering is required for your application (footings, slab, timber/steel sizes, tie downs etc).

Or if unsure head to your local council & talk to a certifier or town planner about what you can do on your property.

  •  Once plans are drawn lodge them through a certifier (Application Process) who will assess them under the current Queensland Building Act & Codes & issue a building permit. Note: No building work can proceed without the building permit.
  • Once you have your plans approved construction may proceed.

2. What building work/s do I need a building permit for? 
The above information is adapted form the Brisbane City Council Website and is intended as a guide only and specific information should be obtained from Council’s building section www.brisbane.qld.gov.au

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3. How close can I build to the boundaries?
Brisbane siting variations

4. Am I able to build closer than the required boundary setbacks?
A relaxation (siting variation) application would have to be lodged to Council for any building work that is constructed within the regulated setback boundaries.

5. To raise & build-in underneath my house, what should I be aware of?
You may need a wider side boundary clearance. The width of the side boundary clearances depends on the height of the building, so raising the building may mean a wider clearance is required.

For example, a low set home is generally less than 4.5m high & required a boundary clearance of 1.5m on a standard block(BCC standard block criteria). By raising it to a height between 4.5m & 7.5m a 2m side boundary clearance is required.

• A ceiling height of 2.4m is required in bedrooms, lounge rooms & rumpus rooms.
• Floor usually needs to be 225mm above ground
• External walls must be water proof.

Before having plans drawn for approval, consult your draftsperson on current regulations regarding side boundary clearances.
 
6. Why do I need a height certificate from a land surveyor?
For any building work that exceeds 8.2 meters in height (measured from natural ground) must be certified on a form 16 by a licensed land surveyor.

7. I have received a form 22 in the mail, what does this mean?
The notice of discontinuance of engagement means that your building application has been laspsed & the work is not approved. This is due to the building works not being completed within the 18 month time frame. Or no response to Bonafides expiry letter sent out 3 to 5 months prior to the expiry date. 
What to do? You will have to go through the whole application process & fees again.

8. What are Form 15′s & Form 16′s for?
The scope of works performed is to be specified by the – BSA licensee, or competent person, or supplier of a product. • Form 15 is required prior to construction work for a design or product (from Nov 2006) • Form 16 is required after construction for an inspection or installation for all various relevant aspects for the scope of work of the project.              

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9. What is BSA insurance?
Building Services Australia require the licensed builder to pay Home Warranty Insurance for building works that will be over $3,300. Visit the BSA website for more details. http://www.bsa.qld.gov.au. We require the ‘Conformation of Insurance’ before we can release the approved plans.

10. What is Portable Long Service Leave- Qleave?
Portable Long Service Leave is long service leave for workers in the building industry and needs to be paid if building works are going to be over $80,000. We require this along with the conformation of insurance to release the plan.

11. I’m having problems with my builder- (not completing the work, it’s faulty work) what do I do?
Please forward any complaints to the Building Services Authority- Homeowners complaints

12. Am I able to change my plans after they have been approved?
Yes, be aware there is an amended plan fee & you will be waiting another 3-4 weeks for them to be approved.

13. How long do I have to complete the building work?
From the approval date you will have 18 months to complete the building works. Refer to your Decision Notice for expiry date.

14. How much detail needs to be on the plans?
Sample Plan Details

15. Can I come to your office & speak to the certifier?
We no longer have an office but offer an onsite advice service, please make an appointment by contacting our office, fees apply for this service.