Older building consents and CCCs

The purpose of this guide is to provide the building owner with a clear process and pathway when applying for a Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) on a building consent that is more than 4 years old.

This guide lists the steps involved when making an application for a CCC on an older building consent and explains the legislative considerations.

This guide does not cover building work or buildings that were constructed as part of a building permit (i.e., building permit that was issued prior to the implementation of the Building Act 1991). Building permits were issued by council under the Bylaw regime when there was no requirement to carry out final inspections or issue a CCC.

What is an older building consent?

Any building consent that does not have a CCC which was issued four or more years ago (from the date the building consent was issued) is considered an older building consent.

Step-by-step process

The following is a step-by-step process outlining how to apply for a CCC on an older building consent: -

  • Initial request (by applicant)
  • Assessment (by Council)
  • Final inspection (by Council)
  • Further investigation if required (by the Building Surveyor)
  • Final decision (by Council)

Note: These steps are explained further within this guidance.

Legislative requirements

A Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) is a formal statement issued by Council certifying that:

  • For building consents issued under the Building Act 2004 - building work carried out complies with the applicable building code that applied at the time the building consent was granted.
  • For building consents under the Building Act 1991 - building work carried out complies with the applicable building code that applied at the time the building consent was granted.

In any case, before Council can issue the CCC, we must be 'satisfied on reasonable grounds' that the building work complies with the building code and/or the building consent. If Council cannot be satisfied on reasonable grounds, we will refuse the CCC and set out the reasons as required under Section 95A of the Act. In some instances, if the non-compliance is major, Council is also required to issue a Notice to Fix.

What does the Council need to consider when assessing an older building consent?

The Council must consider compliance with the Building Code in particular, the requirements of Clause B2 Durability and Clause E2 External Moisture.  

Clause B2: Durability

Clause B2.3.1 of the Building Code requires that the building element (as installed) complies not only on the day of issuing the CCC but also will continue to comply throughout its specified intended life.  

In most cases, the expected durability of the building element starts from the day they are installed; therefore with older consents the durability period will have already commenced.  

For example, claddings are expected to have a life of 15 years, if your building is several years old, we have to consider the length of time the cladding has already been on the building and what impact this will have on our decision.  

This issue has been considered in many Determinations issued  by the Ministry of Business Innovation & Employment (MBIE). These Determinations recommend that the owner seeks an amendment to the building consent to modify Clause B2.3.1; so that the durability periods commence at the time that the work was substantially completed (rather than at the time of issuing the CCC). 

This means that for an owner who wishes to apply for a CCC for an old building consent, they are required to apply for an amendment to the original building consent with: 

  • A request to modify Clause B2.3.1; and  
  • Advise a date of substantial completion. 

You can apply for a B2 modification at the same time as applying for your CCC.

Clause E2: External Moisture

Clause E2 requires the building and its overall weathertightness performance to comply with the Building Code. Where the work has been completed for some time, Council will have to carry out a full review and re-inspection to enable Council to be satisfied on reasonable grounds that the work still complies at the time of re-inspection. An extensive investigation and weathertightness report is often required to assist with this process. Relying on inspections carried out years ago may not be enough for us to be satisfied on reasonable grounds that the work complies with the Building Code 

Council does not have the expertise and necessary equipment to carry out weathertightness investigations, which involves the testing and analysis of closed in and completed building work. These investigations are normally carried out independently by a Registered Building Surveyor (specialist in weathertightness).  

The owner is responsible for the engagement of the Building Surveyor, the cost of investigation and authorising any invasive testing or other necessary activity by the Building Surveyor. 

If an extensive investigation is not undertaken, or the building is of a risky nature (e.g. monolithic cladding), Council may not be able to be satisfied, on reasonable grounds that weathertightness requirements of the code can be met. This would be sufficient reason to refuse a CCC. 

The decisive factor is that Council must be satisfied on reasonable grounds that the building work complies with the building code or the building consent at the time of issuing the CCC. If Council is not satisfied on reasonable grounds, then a CCC will not be issued. The reason for not issuing the CCC will then be given in writing to the owner. 

The owner/owner's agent may at any stage of the process apply for a Determination with the Ministry of Business Innovation & Employment (MBIE) about Council's decision not to issue a CCC. Where the Determination process is followed MBIE will engage at its cost, independent experts to assess the building work and these reports are shared with the property owner. 

How do I apply for a CCC on an older building consent?

Initial Request

Complete the application to request a review of your building consent or click the link below if you are a registered customer.

Once submitted, your application will then be reviewed and assessed by a Building Specialist Officer to determine how it will proceed.

Initial Assessment

Once your application is received, a Building Specialist will review your building consent documentation. The following factors will be considered: 

  • The age of the building/building work 
  • The complexity of the design 
  • The type of cladding material used and method of installation (cavity or no cavity) 
  • The status of inspections already carried out and if any inspection types were not called for 
  • Any outstanding issues, outstanding documentation 
  • Any outstanding fees
  • The E2 risk matrix score assessment (weathertightness assessment). 
The E2 risk matrix score assessment will consider the following factors: 
  • Number of storey/s 
  • Wind zone 
  • Roof/wall junction (number of junctions, interfaces and level of complexity) 
  • Eave width 
  • Decks and balconies 
  • Cladding type/material; junctions, complexity, junction of multiple claddings. 

 The initial assessment/review is necessary for Council to: 

  • Review all information of the building consent in council's records 
  • Identify any potential issues that could affect the issuing of the CCC 
  • Establish the risk profile regarding the building/building project 
  • Confirm whether a final inspection can proceed; and the time and date of the inspection with the owner/owner's agent. 
Confirmation to proceed with Final Inspection

If a final inspection has been confirmed and may proceed, the owner will be advised to book an inspection.

Following the final inspection, Council will assess whether the work complies whilst also taking into account the initial assessment undertaken by the Building Specialist. If the initial assessment and the final inspection shows compliance can be met and a pass result is achieved, the customer will be notified to apply for their CCC.

If the inspection identifies concerns relating to weathertightness, Council may request an investigation/report by a suitably qualified person (i.e. Registered Building Surveyor, Registered Architect or Chartered Professional Engineer)to assist in determining compliance.

In some cases, remedial works will be required to meet the code. Remedial works could be identified as part of Council's inspection or identified in the weathertightness investigation/report. Depending on the circumstances, the following could be required:

  • Remedial work is instructed to be completed and inspected by the Inspector with updated/as-built plan to record the remedial works.
  • An amendment to the existing building consent is to be applied for the remedial works; approval is needed before work being completed.

In any case, all remedial works identified as part of the initial review and subsequent final inspection, will need to be rectified before approval is given.

Reports from a Qualified Persons

Council may request a report from a suitably qualified person (i.e. Registered Building Surveyor, Registered Architect or Chartered Professional Engineer) with specialist expertise in weathertightness.

Before engaging an expert, it is important to confirm and reach an agreement with Council on the person who will provide the report. Information and sufficient evidence will be required to demonstrate the suitability and competence of the person/author of the report. The information should include but is not limited to the following:

  • Demonstrated competence in the type and scale of the project subject to the investigation
  • Formal qualification
  • Relevant work experience
  • Membership of appropriate professional affiliation
  • Appropriate level of professional indemnity insurance based on the value of the work
  • Declaration of any potential conflict of interest

Acceptance of the report will also be subject to the following, in particular but not limited to:

  • The report must be a full assessment of all building envelope that was completed as part of the building work concerned (i.e. wall cladding, roof cladding, external joineries, penetrations, junctions/interfaces, flashing etc.)
  • The report and investigation must be thorough and extensive to the extent that is deemed appropriate by the author to provide a conclusive statement on the level of compliance of the building work. (The report is expected to be the same type and quality of report required to be provided to the Ministry - MBIE for Determination purposes)
  • Evidence of invasive testing (or any other necessary testing) and analysis carried out by the author of the report to confirm weathertightness performance of the building work
  • Conclusion as to whether or not the building work complies with the building code Clauses B2 and E2
  • Supporting document, photographs, testing result and analysis carried out as part of the investigation
  • Detail of any failure or concern regarding weathertightness performance
  • Detail of any remedial works or recommendation on how to fix any of the non-compliance or failure
  • Detail of any proposal by the author as to how the work can be remediated with a plan of monitoring and supervising of the remedial work
  • Any other recommendation/comment by the author.

Any remedial works (recommended by the report) will need to be approved and inspected by Council prior to being completed on site.

Unable to verify Compliance

If we are unable to verify compliance as part of the final inspection and review, you will be sent a letter outlining the reasons why. From here, the following options are available to the owner:

  • Take no further action. Note however, while Council may not take further action they reserve the right to inspect if it becomes aware that the building/building work is potentially dangerous or insanitary.      
  • Discuss with Council options to provide additional evidence or supporting documentation to verify how the building work complies.
  • Apply for an amendment to the existing building consent to cover the remedial works; note approval is needed before work being completed.
  • Apply for a Determination with the Ministry - MBIE.

When do I apply for my Code of Compliance Certificate?

Under Section 92 of the Building Act 04 you may be able to apply for CCC when the building is complete.

What happens after I have applied for my CCC?

You will be sent an email confirming receipt of your application. We will then check the application for correctness and completeness. If your application is incomplete, it will be returned with the reasons outlined.

Once we have accepted your application, Council has 20 working days in which to make a decision.

If your application is approved, we will issue a CCC with a B2 Modification identifying the date of substantial completion.

What is the process for commercial applications?

The process for commercial application is the same.

Complete the application to request a review of your building consent or click the link below if you are a registered customer.

Multi-unit residential, industrial or commercial buildings usually have Specified Systems in them and require a compliance schedule. The compliance schedule is issued with your CCC. The compliance schedule lists the maintenance, inspection and reporting requirements for each of the ‘specified systems’ in the building. Examples of specified systems include, but are not limited to, emergency lighting or automatic fire-suppression systems, back flow prevention devices, lifts and signage. Evidence of compliance will be required at the time of the final inspection.

Fees

Associated fees will be charged for the review assessment, possible final inspection and any related administration costs carried out as part of the on-going process.

These are charged as actual costs and fees can be found in our Schedule of Fees and Charges.

All outstanding fees are payable before any CCC can be issued.