COVID-19: Building services

Thank you for your continued support as together we navigate through the various alert levels imposed by the government. We appreciate your understanding. 

We are doing our best to maintain our usual level of service during these unprecedented times. However, the reality is that things may take longer than usual for a number of reasons. If you require a face-to-face meeting with Building Control staff during Alert Levels 1 and 2 you will need to book an appointment by contacting the building administration team:

For information on our services during the Alert Level stages please see our FAQs below.  

Customers can still access information relating to building consents by:

During the Alert Level stages we will prioritise urgent building consent and code compliance certificate applications, particularly where there is an essential need. 

It is important to note the issuing of a code compliance certificate may be compromised if building work continues without the required inspections. 

Frequently asked questions

Building consents

Can I lodge a building consent or project information memorandum application during Alert Level 2?

Yes, by using our online services

There will be NO on-site kiosk services available for online applications. Staff can assist via telephone if you are having issues. 

Hard copy applications can be submitted by post. However, a digital scanning fee will be included in the final costs. Fees are dependent on the size of the application.

How can I check the status of a building consent lodged during the Alert Level stages?

You’ll need to be nominated as a stakeholder by the applicant if you want to see further details about the building application. The applicant can add you as a user if you have a RealMe account. Or you can request us to add you by emailing ebucontacts@wdc.govt.nz

 

How can I pay for my building consent or project information memorandum?

We can accept payments by internet banking. Find information on payment methods.

You can pay any outstanding fees at Council Customer Services at 101 Guyton Street. However, there are protocols to follow when entering the building. More information is available on our customer services page.

Can I apply for an extension of time to start or complete work?

Yes, now is a good time to apply to have the time extended to start work or complete your project. Apply using the required form found on our website and submit by emailing to: ebucontacts@wdc.govt.nz.  We will review your request and email you a response.

Can I apply for discretionary exemption from building consent (under schedule 1 clause 2 of the Building Act 2004)?

Yes, by emailing your application to ebucontacts@wdc.govt.nz. Make sure you complete the application form and provide the required information. The application form can be found on our website. Once your application is processed, we’ll email our decision to you.

Inspections and code compliance certificates

Can I book an inspection during Alert Level 2?

Yes, all site inspections services have resumed. However, there will be stringent protocols followed by staff as per section 2 for site management. 

Site inspections must be booked through our administration staff and the full contact details of the contact on site must be provided. 

A full printed set of plans/specifications must be onsite as building control officers will be conducting inspections obeying social distancing requirements. 

Contact details for all site workers must be supplied to the building control officer. 

Any failure of the above protocols will see the inspection suspended and charged at full cost.

What are the obligations for site management?

Each construction site operating at Alert Level 2 needs to have in place a COVID-19 Controls Plan. This plan will guide how the principal or main contractor and contractors will manage work on site and the controls they will use to minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission.  

The COVID-19 controls are over and above the existing health and safety plan requirements for residential construction sites. It is the responsibility of the site owner (the party responsible for overall site co-ordination) to ensure this plan is in place. The site owner may be a client (e.g. in the case of a self-managed renovation); a group home builder; a project manager; or a small builder / contractor.  

There must always be a nominated person onsite when work is occurring who is responsible for administering the COVID-19 management plan. This can be shared among multiple people from different contractors for an individual site if required.

Are code compliance certificates being issued during Alert Level 2?

Yes in most cases if the application is submitted via the online portal or to ebucontacts@wdc.govt.nz

Can I lodge a Certificate of Acceptance (CoA) application during Alert Level 2?

We can accept and process Certificate of Acceptance applications during Alert Level 2. However, the site inspection protocols will also apply.

Building Warrant of Fitness and Compliance Schedules

Is it business as usual for issuing building warrants of fitness?

Yes, the building warrant of fitness team is working remotely and from the office. We are trying to limit disruption to the building warrant of fitness regime as much as possible. 

Your annual building warrant of fitness returns and questions can be emailed to ebucontacts@wdc.govt.nz

Are new compliance schedules being issued during Alert Level 2?

Yes, email the Form 11 and supporting information to ebucontacts@wdc.govt.nz.

What are the consequences of not providing a Form 12A (certificate of compliance) during the lockdown?

There may be reasons why a Form 12A cannot be provided, such as a missed inspection or maintenance procedure by an independent qualified person. 

We are waiting for further guidance from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) on dealing with missed inspections or maintenance due to the COVID-19 lockdown. We will liaise with stakeholders when we receive MBIE guidance, however we will not penalise building owners for doing the right thing during lockdown.

To stay up-to-date, visit www.building.govt.nz/covid-19/

Will infringement notices be issued during lockdown for not supplying the Council with a building warrant of fitness?

No, we will not issue infringement notices if the missed inspection is due to the COVID-19 lockdown.

Are building warrant of fitness audits being performed during Alert Level 2?

No, we will not be performing on-site audits during Alert Level 2 unless it is an extraordinary circumstance.