Apply for a Change of Use

If you are planning to change a building's established use, you must give Council written notice of the proposed changes.

Common examples of changes of use are:

  • residential house to restaurant
  • warehouse to apartments
  • dwelling to childcare facility.

A change of use can trigger Building Code compliance issues and certain systems or elements within the building may require changes or upgrading. 

Changing part of an existing building can trigger the need to upgrade the whole building.  For example there may be a change to crowd activity, that changes the category of the building.

How you can use all or parts of buildings is specified in Schedule 2 of the Building Regulations and Section 115 of the Building Act 2004.

By email

Step 1.Make an appointment 

Make an appointment to see one of our duty officers so you can explain what you are intending to do in detail.

Enquire online

Phone:  09 430 4200

Step 2.Apply in writing 

When you are ready to apply, there is no form to complete but you must provide the following information:

  • your name and address, and address of the building (if different)
  • description of the change proposed, even if it is only to part of the building
  • the reason for the change
  • the location of the building in relation to other buildings and natural hazards
  • if the building is to be open to the public and how many people could be using the space at any given time.

Step 3.Email us

Email the information to:

Email: mailroom@wdc.govt.nz  

By post

Step 1.Make an appointment 

Make an appointment to see one of our duty officers so you can explain what you are intending to do in detail.

Enquire online

Phone:  09 430 4200

Step 2.Apply in writing 

When you are ready to apply, there is no form to complete but you must provide the following information:

  • your name and address, and address of the building (if different)
  • description of the change proposed, even if it is only to part of the building
  • the reason for the change
  • the location of the building in relation to other buildings and natural hazards
  • if the building is to be open to the public and how many people could be using the space at any given time.

Step 3.Post it to us

Post your information to: 

The Manager - Building Control
Whangarei District Council 
Private Bag 9023
Whangārei 0148 

In-person

Step 1.Make an appointment 

Make an appointment to see one of our duty officers so you can explain what you are intending to do in detail.

Enquire online

Phone:  09 430 4200

Step 2.Apply in writing 

When you are ready to apply, there is no form to complete but you must provide the following information:

  • your name and address, and address of the building (if different)
  • description of the change proposed, even if it is only to part of the building
  • the reason for the change
  • the location of the building in relation to other buildings and natural hazards
  • if the building is to be open to the public and how many people could be using the space at any given time.

Step 3.Bring into us 

You can bring the information into one of our service centres:

Forum North customer service centre
7 Rust Avenue, Whangārei
Monday to Friday - 8:00am to 4:30pm
Closed public holidays

Ruakākā service centre 
9 Takutai Place, Ruakākā
Monday to Friday - 8:30am to 4:00pm
Closed public holidays

When looking at a request to change the use of a building, we must decide whether we can allow the change of use under the Building Act 2004 or whether building consent is required to upgrade the building to comply with the Building Code, so that the building still meets code requirements relating to:

  • means of escape from fire, protection of other property, sanitary facilities, structural performance, fire-rating performance
  • access and facilities for people with disabilities (if this is a requirement for the building)
  • compliance with other aspects of the Building Code to at least the same extent as before the change of use occurred.

If there is no change in compliance requirements or if they are less, then the change of use may be allowed. If code compliance is increased, a Building Consent maybe required to upgrade the building.

If upgrading of the building is required, the Code of Compliance will be refused and a Building Consent will be required to effect the change.

If a  Building Consent is required, the change of use will be refused at this time (unless it is part of a Building Consent application). The change cannot be put into effect until a Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) has been issued for the work. Your Building Consent application must state that the work will result in a change of use of the building.

The change of use may be allowed by the Building Act, but some other form of consent or permission may be required (for example, Resource Consent). This consent must be given before the change can be effected. Other changes may come from the change of use and need to be addressed individually.

Building Consent

Code Compliance Certificate

Resource Consent

A change of use might also change the rates you pay.

Rates

If you wish to make a complaint, please follow the link below. 

Compliments, complaints and feedback