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Code Compliance Certificates for Older Buildings

This page contains information about older buildings which have not been issued a Code Compliance Certificate and how owners can proceed.
Updated: 26/09/2019 1:52 p.m.

This is mainly concerned with buildings built between 1992 and 2005, under the "old Act" as decisions about issuing a Code Compliance Certificate were not time bound.

This may also apply or be pertinent to buildings built after 2005 where for whatever reason a Code Compliance Certificate has not been issued.

In all cases, a Building Consent will need to have been issued.

Compliance for Older Buildings

Buildings built after 1992, if they were issued a building consent, ideally should have a Code Compliance Certificate.

Under the "old Act" these certificates could be issued by either the local authority or by a private certifier.

These are both recognised under the current Building Act through transitional provisions, specifically section 438. Also, in some cases an "interim" Code Compliance certificate was issued.

This is also seen as bringing the building work as described on both the issued consent and certificate to its natural conclusion and no further certification is needed or will be granted in relation to code compliance.

If you have multiple buildings on one consent then the interim code compliance certificate will be limited to the description identified on the certificate, like the specific unit number or floor level and the like.

If your building is five or more years old and it doesn’t have a Code Compliance Certificate, you can still apply.

Fees apply for these applications.

Code Compliance Certificate application form [311kb]

The building consent authority – in this case, the Whangarei District Council – will conduct an assessment, usually including reviewing the property file records and an onsite inspection of the building. Based on this assessment, we will decide whether we can issue a Code Compliance Certificate.

The inspection may highlight work that needs to be completed to enable us to issue the Code Compliance Certificate. Once this work is done, the process can resume.

One important piece of information that we will require is a date when the building was completed. This may be the date of previous final inspection, moving in date or contract completion certificate or similar. This will establish a date of "substantial completion".

Whangarei has had several building authorities in the past which may have issued building consent and inspected your building work.

If your building is one of these there are some further administration steps that that we must follow to retrieve files and add to council records. These steps will also, unfortunately, carry an additional cost that will form part of the fees charged.

Council still has 20 days to process these applications and can suspend the "clock" if seeking further information or if work has to be undertaken to address identified issues.

If you have a building without Code Compliance Certificate, please contact us for an appointment to discuss options with one our building officers.

Durability Modification

If you are applying for a Code Compliance Certificate on an older building there are some other considerations to be aware of.

Materials used in construction have minimum performance requirements specified in the building code, in particular NZBC B2, regarding durability – or how long it should last.

For claddings, the non structural outside "covering" of a building, for example, the minimum "durability requirement" is 15 years.

If your building was completed, say, 10 years ago, we will be asking for the durability to be modified under the building code.

This does not affect issue of the Code Compliance Certificate, this simply recognises that materials have already "aged" and that the Certificate will be effectively "back dated" with respect to durability, to a date when the building work was originally completed or to the "substantial completion" date.

Please also note that this modification is sent to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and forms part of the property record.

New Zealand Building Code Clause B2


Sometimes, applications for Code Compliance Certificate will be refused. This may occur if the work is not complete, does not comply with your building consent, or the required documentation has not or cannot be supplied.

A refusal to issue a Code Compliance Certificate does not prevent owners from applying for a Code Compliance Certificate at later date, however, a further or future applications will only be considered if the reasons for the original refusal have been meaningfully addressed.

If you are unhappy with the decision made by the building consent authority, you can request a determination from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment on the decision.

Building Performance - Determinations



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