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Building Legislation Overview

The Western Australian government has been proactive in developing an enforcing regulation and reforms to the Building and Construction Industry within Western Australia. As part of the regulatory framework several Acts have been passed that govern actions and requirements of companies and individuals operating within the Building Industry. These Acts relate to and include the following:

  • The Architects Act 2004
  • Building Act 2011
  • Building Services (Complaint Resolution and Administration) Act 2011
  • Building Services Levy Act 2011
  • Building Services (Registration) Act 2011
  • Construction Contracts Act 2004
  • Dividing Fences Act 1961
  • Home Building Contracts Act 1991
  • Plumbers Licensing Act 1995

The Acts can be explored further on the Western Australian Governments website under the Building Commissions Legislative Framework page: click here

The Building Act

On 2nd April 2012, the Building Act 2011 was formally introduced to Western Australian and outlined a number of significant changes to the Building Approval Process. One of the biggest changes to the approvals process was the introduction of Private Design Certification. The legislation allows clients to have projects reviewed, verified and certified by Registered private Building Certifiers. The Act still requires a Permit Authority (local council or similar) to issue a Building Permit however the Act requires that any Class 2-9 building (buildings or structures other than a single residence) be certified by a Registered Building Surveying Contractor/Practitioner and be issued with a Certificate of Design Compliance prior to being submitted for a Building Permit. The application is then reviewed and approved by the Permit Authority as a certified application.

The legislated introduction of the Building Act 2011 where introduced to streamline the building approvals process and provide a mechanism to improve the processing times for obtaining Building Permit/Approval through the local authority.

The introduction of private certification by Registered Building Surveying Contractor/Practitioner has resulted in a faster approval process that is also being enjoyed by home owners with many opting to have their homes certified privately to expedite the approvals process.

Western Australian Government Department of Commerce Building Act 2011 review can be found here:
https://www.commerce.wa.gov.au/publications/building-act-2011-overview

The Approvals Process

Refer Flowchart Diagrams – Flowchart 1