Building Application Process
If you’re planning to build or make changes to your land, it is essential to understand the application process and any permits or approvals you may need.
There are three main stages:
- Planning approval
- Determination of Category of Building and Demolition Work and Issuance of a Certificate of Likely Compliance
- Building Approval
Some exemptions apply within each stage, but checks should be undertaken to ascertain what approvals are required.
Stage 1: Planning Approval
Planning approvals are required for the use of land in accordance with the Tasmanian Planning Scheme. A Planning Permit authorises the use and development of land. This includes subdividing land, constructing a house, tree removal, or operating a business. A planning permit assesses proposals against the Tasmanian Planning Scheme.
Before starting any work, make an appointment with one of our Planners to check if a planning permit is required.Book an appointment with Building Book an appointment with Plumbing
Stage 2: Determination of Category of Building and Demolition Work and Issuance of a Certificate of Likely Compliance
The Building Act 2016 takes a risk-based approach to building approvals. Some low-risk and medium-risk building, and demolition work can be done without seeking a building permit from the Council.
You will need a private Building Surveyor to provide the necessary building approvals. If you require a permit from the Council, the Building Surveyor will make this application for you.
A Building Surveyor is a licensed professional responsible for ensuring that buildings are safe, accessible, and energy efficient. They play a crucial role in the design, planning, and functionality of buildings and work alongside other professionals such as engineers, building designers, and builders to ensure compliance with the standards and processes set out in the Building Act 2016 and its regulations. The building surveyor’s involvement lasts for the duration of the building project.
A Building Surveyor will issue a ‘Certificate of Likely Compliance’, which will indicate that the proposed work is likely to comply with the appropriate legislation and the National Construction Code (NCC). The ‘Certificate of Likely Compliance’ from the Building Surveyor will stipulate any relevant conditions that may apply to the building work, as well as nominate the required inspections to be undertaken.
The building permit approval application is then lodged with the Council and is assessed and checked for compliance. If compliant, a Building Permit will be issued. A building permit is valid for two years from the date of issue, and building work must commence within 12 months of the date of issue. The builder is required to lodge a Building Start Work Notice to the building surveyor before any work can commence.
Stage 3: Building Approval
The building approval process varies depending on the category of building and demolition work:
- Permit building work: High-risk building work requires a permit issued by the Council. This involves a formal assessment process by the Permit Authority (Council) and the building surveyor.
- Notifiable Building Work: Medium-risk work doesn’t require a building permit but still requires oversight by a building surveyor. The surveyor will assess the work for compliance and issue a Certificate of Likely Compliance.
- Low-risk building work: This category includes minor work that can be done without a permit or the involvement of a building surveyor.
Please note that exemptions may apply within each stage, but it’s essential to check the specific permits and approvals required for your project.
Before starting any work, make an appointment with our Building Permit Officer to check if building approval is required or contact an accredited Building Surveyor.
Plumbing Application Process
There are three categories of plumbing work, based on the level of risk to public health and safety. There are different approval processes for each category. The Director of Building Control has issued a Determination showing the types of plumbing work that fall into each category. All plumbing work in each of these categories must be carried out by a licensed plumber. There is also work that may be performed by an owner. This covers mainly minor repairs and maintenance. This work does not need a permit or to be carried out by a licensed plumber.
The person performing plumbing work is responsible for ensuring that the work does not interfere with any easements of network utility operator’s stormwater drainage systems, unless written consent has been obtained. Penalties apply for failure to comply with these provisions in the Building Regulations 2016 (Sections 42 and 43). TasWater will provide a Certificate of Certifiable Works (CCW) for any work that is likely to interfere with their infrastructure.
Permit plumbing work
High risk plumbing work requires a permit issued by the permit authority. Work in this category is referred to as ‘Permit Plumbing Work’. This category includes all work that would have previously required a Special Plumbing Permit and has a much more rigorous inspection regime than other categories of plumbing.
The permit process for this type of work has been separated into two stages:
- Permission to install/carry out the plumbing work
- Requirements for maintaining the installation.
Permit plumbing work must be designed by a qualified designer, and must be performed by a licensed plumber, who has the qualifications required for the particular type of work being carried out.
If you are installing an on-site wastewater management system or a greywater reuse, recycling or diversion system, the Permit Authority must inspect the work at each mandatory notification stage.
For other high risk plumbing work, the permit authority may inspect the work. This decision will be based on a number of factors, including the practitioner’s level of experience and track record of compliance.
Permit plumbing work includes:
- All performance solutions
- Above ground sanitary systems (multi-story, commercial and residential)
- Below ground drainage
- Testable backflow prevention devices
- On-site Wastewater Management Systems
- Connections to trade waste installations
- Wet wells or pump out toilets
- Work in high risk locations
- Roof plumbing that is not notifiable or low risk work
- Fire Services that are not notifiable or low risk such as new hose reels, hydrants, or water supply services
Notifiable plumbing work
Medium risk plumbing work does not require a permit but must be designed by a qualified designer and carried out by a licensed plumber.
The Plumbing Permit Authority must be notified when this work is being carried out, so this is referred to as “notifiable plumbing work”.
Because councils employ plumbing surveyors, the permit authority will still be involved in assessing the design and issuing a certificate of likely compliance (notifiable plumbing work) for the work, arranging inspections, and issuing a certificate of completion for the work.
Notifiable plumbing work includes:
- Sanitary plumbing for new houses
- New hot and cold water reticulation
- Large scale commercial irrigation
Low risk plumbing work
Some work relating to plumbing is considered to be so low risk that it can safely be undertaken by an owner or other competent person.
This might include:
- Changing taps and washers
- Replacing a shower head or water filter cartridge with the same type of unit
- Replacement of a water tank with a similar model using existing pumps and pipe work
Most low risk plumbing work though should be carried out by a licensed plumber but it doesn’t need a plumbing permit.
- Installing a water tank
- Bathroom or kitchen renovations
- Unblocking drains
- Repairs to plumbing installations
In some cases, it’s important for the Council to know that the work has been carried out. So even though no permit is required, there is a category of low-risk plumbing work that will require the plumber to notify to the Council on completion.
- Installing a hot water cylinder in a new location
- Repairs to sewerage pipes
- New stormwater for residential buildings
Plumbing Applications can be submitted to: email@example.com
Building Act & Regulations
How can I obtain copies of building plans?
To obtain copies of your building and/or plumbing plans, including as constructed sewer and stormwater, the Council requires completion of the Request for Building/Plumbing Plans Application Form, also available as an online fillable PDF below, along with payment of fees.