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Code Mark Products, Systems and Alternative Solutions

This page contains information about Code marked products and alternative solutions, the information we require to assist processing, to save time and cost and what you can do if we are not satisfied on reasonable grounds and refuse your application.
Updated: 28/01/2020 9:32 a.m.

​Whangarei District Council is an accredited Building Consent Authority as defined in the Building Act 2004.

One of the many regulations that must be adhered to in order to retain this is defined in Regulation 17(2)(c), of the Building (Accreditation of Building Consent Authorities) Regulations 2006, ensuring that it operates within its scope of accreditation.

Building (Accreditation of Building Consent Authorities) Regulations 2006

The scope limits council to only issue building consent and code compliance certificates on building work undertaken within New Zealand.

This also means that it cannot, singularly, assess building products, systems or assemblies for compliance to the New Zealand Building Code where foreign standards of compliance may be present, or with an overseas code mark.

That being said, the Building Consent Authority will, in these circumstances accept and require records of items like in-service use overseas, current in-service use in New Zealand, and engineering reports by New Zealand based engineers or similar identifying how the product complies with the New Zealand building code.

It is up to the applicant to provide clear evidence of how their product or products meet Building Code requirements, including items like assembly and installation instructions. 

These documents should be provided in the application to assist determining, on reasonable grounds, compliance to the code.

The Ministry offer good guidance on this subject and this should be understood if making application with these types of product.

If the Building Consent Authority cannot be reasonably satisfied with compliance to the building code, the application will be refused.

Ministry Guidance on Building Product Certification

The following link will provide further guidance on assemblies that may be used in construction and product assurance.

Ministry Guidance on Off site construction. 

If your application is refused you can seek a determination by the Ministry about the decision made by the authority.

Applying for a Determination  (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment)

If the product has a current New Zealand Code Mark these must be accepted. BRANZ appraised products also have a high level of credibility, however, the Building Consent Authority will ensure that the product, system or similar, are being used as stated in the certifying reports and guidance documents as stated by the certifying authority, so these should be included in the application documents when submitting to save research time when processing.

The multiproof scheme my be beneficial if you are looking at a standardised design or modular construction approach and you are intending to build or install multiple units per year.

Ministry Guidance on Multiproof

Alternative Solutions

The New Zealand Building Code is a performance based set of criteria that buildings and building products must meet.

There are in the building code, some design options that have, through time and common usage, been accepted as the "acceptable solutions" and buildings can be designed and built with just these items.

However, there are always different ways or methods of achieving an outcome and in building terms these are called "alternative solutions".

They may still comply and perform to the building code but their design/use may not have been established over time, therefore, not an "acceptable solution" so when used, they will need to be backed up with more information to show how the design or product will perform to the code - for example;

  • last for 50 years,
  • keep water outside the building,
  • retain heat within the building.

As said, there will be a higher threshold of information required to be supplied with these types of design/product as you have to demonstrate to us how performance requirements of the code will be met.

Again if we are not reasonably satisfied that the information provided demonstrates that the product or method the application can be refused and you can seek a determination on our decision.

The Ministry has further guidance on this and should be followed if using alternative solutions.

Alternative Solutions for Compliance with the Building Code (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment)



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