How to apply for a building permit

Overview

Applying for a building permit is easy.

Step One: Choose a Building Surveyor

A building permit application can be made to Corangamite Shire’s municipial building surveyor or a private building surveyor.
An agent can appoint a building surveyor on your behalf but Consumer Affairs Victoria suggest your choose your own, so you can be confident of their independence. You can find a building surveyor through the Australian Institute of Building Surveyors or the Victorian Building Authority

By choosing Council’s municipial building surveyor you will have easy access to a wealth of local knowledge which can ensure efficient and coordinated processing of an application, including advice regarding any Planning or Health permits or site variations.

Step Two: Lodgement of Application

A completed, dated and signed Building Application Form needs to be submitted with:

  • A Building Permit Fee (which includes a State Government Building Authority Levy) based on the written estimate of the cost of works that itemises total materials and labour for the project. This could be the builder’s or supplier’s quote. Contact a Building Officer for fee costs.
  • A full copy of Certificate of Title that is no older that six months.
  • At least 3 copies of scaled drawings, specifications, structural drawings and computations and scaled site plans. These plans need to be drawn by a draftsperson or architect to ensure high levels of professional accuracy.

Architectural plans and elevations need to be drawn to scale of no less than 1:100. A site plan of the property should be drawn to a scale no less than 1:500 that clearly indicates the proposed building, distances to property boundaries and location of existing building.

Step Three: Assessment of Application

Once a building permit application has been lodged, the building surveyor is able to check for compliance with the Building Act and Regulations, determine whether further information is required (ie. a soil investigation report, a BAL, amended plans) and then decide to issue a building permit with or without building conditions.

Step Four: Builder's Role

The builder’s responsibility is to build in accordance with the Building Permit and approved plans. Any variation to the approved plans must be submitted to the Building Surveyor for approval before the works are carried out.

Step Five: Mandatory Inspections

Each building permit requires inspections to be carried out at different stages of construction. The type of inspections required will depend entirely on what is to be constructed and will be listed on the building permit. Works should not continue until each relevant inspection has been approved by the Building Surveyor.

Common forms of inspection undertaken by private and municipal building surveyors are:

Foundation and Footing: When construction is on a concrete slab the inspector needs to look at the foundation material/soil before any plastic or reinforcement is in place. Footings are checked for correct siting, depth, diameter and firm bases.

Reinforcement: Prior to concrete being poured the inspector checks the appropriate reinforcing steel is being used and positioned correctly.

Frame Inspection: Prior to the installation of wall cladding and roofing materials the inspector checks all frame members are installed with the same size, type and spacing as shown on the plans or approved documents.

Final Inspection and Occupancy Permits: When works are completed, the owner or builder must request a final inspection be carried out prior to a Building Permit lapsing. If the building is suitable to occupy for its intended use an Occupancy Permit or Certificate of Final Inspection will be issued. A building cannot be occupied until an Occupancy Permit is issued.  Application forms for Occupancy Permits can be downloaded from Council’s links below. These completed forms must be provided to the building surveyor or building inspector prior to or at the final inspection.

Any required trade certifications for work such as Plumbing, Electrical, Glazing, Insulation, and Emergency Lighting may also be required prior to the Occupancy Permit being issued. Contact a Building Officer to arrange for mandatory inspections to be undertaken and to understand what forms and certificates will need to be supplied at each stage of the build.