The planning approval (termed as the development application or DA) and the building permit (BP) are two different processes controlled by different legislation. If the proposed construction requires a planning approval, you must obtain it before you lodge a building permit application with your local council.

Planning approvals or DA ensure that the development is compliant with the local planning scheme, the residential design codes and other relevant policies. This legal document gives you permission for a development or land use. Some developments don’t need a DA and can be lodged for the building permit straight away. Here are some of the developments that require a DA:

  • New residential constructions such as single house, grouped or multiple dwellings, granny flats (ancillary dwellings)
  • Extensions
  • Change of classification; for instance, from residential to office
  • New commercial buildings like offices, showrooms, warehouses
  • Signage

The list is not definite to specifics and we would recommend to contact your local council to find out if a planning approval is required for your proposal. Before you lodge your application, you will need the proposal to be drawn up by a building designer. Depending on the complexity and size of the development, you will probably have to provide a standard set of plans. ⇒ CONTACT ⇐ our building designers for more information.

The planning approval process can be a tedious and time-consuming. Wouldn’t you prefer a professional with a thorough understand of the council’s planning and approval process take over the job for you? After all, time is money! Contact Green Start Consulting to help you navigate through the bureaucracy and get your planning approval sorted.

If you would like to know more about the DA, you can also read Development application (DA): steps to follow.

Building permits or BP is a written approval from a registered building surveyor stating that the proposal is structurally safe and is compliant with the Building Code of Australia (BCA) and other relevant legislation. Any building permit issued is consistent with the requirements of the planning approval. Therefore, you can only lodge a building permit once the planning has been granted. However, some works may be exempt and if you wish to find out more exempted building works according to the Building Regulations of the Building Regulations of 2012 Schedule 4 as at 02 Apr 2013. Click the following link (Work not requiring a building permit) to find out the list of the exempted works according.

Before you lodge for building permit, you will need to provide the following documents:

  • Site survey from a land surveyor.
  • Working drawings: ⇒ CONTACT US ⇐ for more information.
  • Specifications which undertake the new building work, alterations or additions using conventional practice under the Building Code of Australia. We also provide the specifications if needed. ⇒ CONTACT US ⇐ for more information.
  • Details signed off by an engineer: ⇒ CLICK HERE ⇐ to get a quote from our engineers.
  • Termite protection details.
  • Energy Efficiency Assessment: ⇒ CLICK HERE ⇐ to contact our energy assessors if you would like more information.
  • Bushfire Attack Level Report: check on the DFES bushfire prone area map released by the DFES commissioner to see if your site is in a bushfire prone area (a pink area on the map). If so, you will need a BAL (Bushfire Assessment Level) report before a building permit can be issued. Some BAL ratings can add to the construction costs. It would be wise to have one completed by a BPAD accredited Bushfire Attack Level assessor (⇒ CLICK HERE ⇐ to contact our accredited BAL assessor) before you finalise your building design.
  • Other: double check with your local council if any additional documents are required.

It is now possible to have an independent registered Building Surveyor Practitioner assess the plans and prepare the Certificate of Design Compliance. Once the CDC is issued by a private Building Surveyor you can then take that to the council and complete an application for a Certified Building Permit. The Council then have 10 working days to issue the permit, or they must refund your money.

Feel free to contact our building designers for any further inquiries. ⇒ CLICK HERE ⇐