Whether it’s a carport, deck, patio or a new dwelling, BA&A have a streamline certification process to get your building approvals out the door in the most efficient way possible.
Information and resources for AS3959 peace of mind. Thank you to Bernard Trembath at Queensland Bushfire Planning for the industry updates. Such positive feedback from the designers and architects who attended the CPD session! Presentation notes below.
This information is general in nature and may be subject to change. Please contact us and we would be happy to help answer questions specific to your projects.
Thank you to the industry leaders who joined us for the presentation and case studies provided by Booth engineers. We really appreciated the chance to get together and learn more about the engineer’s perspective for retaining walls, pitfalls to avoid and common challenges for builders.
The information in this presentation is the personal opinion of the presenter and is meant to be a guide to the swimming pool approval process and current legislation. It is accurate at the time of the presentation, however due to the changes in the legislation it may not be accurate in the future. Michael Tyrrell – Building Approvals and Advice
Building Act 1975 Qld identifies that Swimming pool require building approval (Chapter 8 – Swimming pool safety). All swimming pools, spas and portable pools that can be filled to a depth of 300mm and have a volume of more than 2000 litres.
Section 231D identifies the pool safety standard as QDC part MP3.4 (and any other standard prescribed under a regulation) as the pool safety standard for Queensland.
Keeping fences up to date
Building Act 1975 – Part 232 Compliance with pool safety standard –
(1) The owner of a regulated pool must ensure the pool complies with the pool safety standard for the pool and all barriers for the pool are kept in good condition
Inspection of pool fences
Building Act 1975 – Part 234 – requirement for compliance with pool safety standard
If a pool has been or is being constructed, the pool builder or owner must ensure that before the pool is filled with water (300mm or more) a building certifier has inspected the fence. The certifier must provide a certificate stating that the pool is a complying pool.
Code MP 3.4
Common Pool fences
• Min 1200mm
• Non Climbable Zone on the outside
• Gap under fence less than 100mm
• No vertical rails more than 100mm apart
• No climbable objects within 900mm on the outside and 300mm on the inside
Common Pool fences
• Min 1800mm
• Non climbable zone on the inside
• Gap under fence less than 100mm
• Climbable objects may be on the outside
Avoid these common mistakes
• Items within additional clear area
• Gap under fence more than 100mm
• Climbable objects on the inside or outside
Top ten tips for compliant pools in Queensland
1. Current CPR sign required
• Min 300×300
• Seen from the pool area
2. Fence height min 1200mm
3. Gates to open outwards – away from the pool area
3. Gate latch is to be at least 1500mm above the ground and 1400mm above the bottom rail
5. Intersecting fences (1800mm and 1200mm) to be max 50mm wide when within the 900mm NCZ
6. Windows forming part of the pool fence child-resistant for the openable portion.
7. Access through a building is not permitted
8. Watch out for items on buildings that might reduce the non climbable zone for the pool fence.
9. Not more than 100mm under the fence.
10. Be consistent with maintenance – keep checking the pool area for compliance.
“We partner with Building Approvals and Advice because the team offers technical know-how. They understand the importance of the end goal – working together to find favourable solutions that also meet the mandatory requirements.”
A massive thank you for all your work getting this project completed for us too. It’s great to have the pieces of the puzzle completed! Please pass on my gratitude to Mick and the whole BA&A team, it has been a very smooth process. Thanks for guiding us through the minefield of council regulations!
Thank you very much, we appreciate how easy it has been to work with you and look forward to the next time.
Thanks for joining us at our event! Please find below a summary of the event and outcomes and copy of handouts/ resource links. It was a great chance to touch base about mandatory requirements and meet with so many professional and experienced members of the roofing industry and MRIAQ
Domestic and commercial roof damage and failures can be dangerous and expensive to remedy. In Queensland, severe weather events including cyclones mean that roof safety of utmost importance. BA&A noticed a concern amongst our clients relating to reroofing certification requirements after the QBCC published a reminder about the obligations for contractors to apply for approval when re roofing works affected over 20% of the roof system.
We sought input from QBCC and experienced engineers and re roofing contractors then arranged a panel discussion amongst stakeholders to answer questions and promote discussion around mandatory obligations.
The key problems the discussion addressed were
- How do we ensure a level playing field and professionalism amongst contractors?
- What are the mandatory obligations for re roofing contractors and what has prompted renewed scrutiny of safety in the area?
- How can we promote collaboration in this industry sector?
- A clarity for building certifiers which supports us to direct queries from clients. A timely reminder for certifiers to exercise due diligence and collaborate with engineers and contractors to ensure roof safety. Building surveyors and engineers should give advice tailored to each specific project and ensure correct tie downs and bracing.
- Regulatory perspectives defined – roofing certification is required when over 20% of the roof requires attention. Either owner or contractor must obtain approval.
- Regulator sympathised with frustrations about renewed checks that procedures are followed but confirmed the machinery of government and regulations is set for time being. Building product quality issues are involved as well so roof failure often does not always just relate to poor contracting.
- Contractors perspective defined- concerns that competitive quotes are effected by including charges for engineering and certifier support. Itemised quotes and continued client education may be required.
- Engineers’ perspectives defined – discussed different roof types and the nature and effects of wind uplift. Recommended that engineers walk the site with client at first to begin collaborative process and ensure decisions are made that match the project location and individual requirements.
Queensland regulatory bodies have renewed their focus on contractor professionalism to ensure mandatory obligations are followed and defective roofing works are reduced. Industry collaboration is key. Although challenging, it’s a period of industry change that we will get through for the good of safety. So Queensland communities can avoid problems after the next storm, and to avoid injuries and damage to homes– roofing contractors need to draw on the support of building surveyors and engineers to protect themselves.
“South East Underpinning Pty Ltd have been using the services of Building Approvals and Advice for more than 4 years. We have found this company to be very professional and friendly. The communication is of a very high level, including a database which clearly show the progress of all our jobs, which is very useful. We highly recommend Building Approvals and Advice and quite often do recommend them to our clients to use for their personal projects. If we have any concerns or problems, BA&A work with us to resolve them or even just to provide professional advice. We are very pleased with the services they provide us and look forward to using them for years to come.”
Ten Tips for Compliant Pool Fencing
- Display CPR Sign
- Check gaps under fences
- Remove climbable objects in fence area
- Avoid self-closing gates
- Gap between glass gate and adjoining panel at latch – no greater than 10mm.
- Gate latch height to be 1500mm above ground and 1400mm above bottom fence rail
- Remove tree/shrub branches capable of holding 25kg – considered climbable
- Gaps between vertical members no greater than 100mm
- Ensure additional clear area on outside of pool fence
- Windows into pool area screened or restricted to 100mm openings
How can I ensure my project is inclusive and accessible?
Notes from the accessibility CPD 2017 – Francis Lenny – DDA Consult
- Understand the hierarchy that exists in regards to accessibility legislation.
Client requirements (specific project brief)
Federal (including Disability Discrimation act)
State (Incluing NCC, BCA nominally parts D3, E3.6 and F2.4)
Council (DA provisions)
- Tips for accessible design
Engage early with design team and stakeholders to ensure a compliant path of travel can be provided to/ from the property boundary.
Stairs/ ramps must be set back, so that handrails will not protrude into the traverse path of travel.
Include margin for error when documenting ramp/ walkway design.
Door design should incorporate 920 mm door leaf, door circulation space.
Ensure the Statutory Signage requirements are met (BCA Part & Specification D3.6 & AS 1428.1 Clause 8)
- Key deign elements – Class 2 building
Pedestrian access is required from the property boundary to the building entry
Typically there is no requirement to provide accessible parking
Access is required to and within common areas (rooftop terrace, refuse disposal)
Access is required to the front door of apartments on levels served by a lift or ramp
Minimum corridor width of 1540 mm preferred
850 mm door opening & 30% luminance contrast between door / wall elements.
BA&A have been in touch with industry bodies to collate expert advice and plan a panel discussion responding to QBCC recommendations. Contact our office if we can provide you with details, or check out these resources from the QBCC (below) and Timber Qld.
Excerpt from QBCC guidance
QBCC TECHNICAL FEATURE – October 2017
Do not overlook basic administrative requirements when re-roofing
By Gary Stick, Manager, QBCC Technical Standards Unit
QBCC Inspectors have identified an issue with re-roofing work, with contractors failing to ensure payment of Home Warranty Scheme premiums and failing to obtain a valid Building Approval.
QBCC Commissioner, Brett Bassett, has reminded contractors that they must comply with relevant standards and building codes. Mr Bassett said the issues relating to re-roofing work had become evident during proactive inspections of construction work by QBCC Technical Standards Unit officers.
Payment of a Home Warranty Scheme premium is required to be paid when the value of a re-roofing contract exceeds $3,300 on a residential building. The value of the building work includes all labour and materials, whether they are supplied by the contractor or not, as well as GST. The premium must be paid within 10 business days after the date the contract was entered into or before the works start (whichever is earlier).
When roofing works involve the replacement of more than 20 per cent of the existing roof area, a Building Approval is required. The building approval must be obtained by either the roofing contractor or the property owner. The general durability of roofs means that it is not uncommon for a roof covering to last 40 to 50 years before replacement is necessary.
During that timeframe, building standards and the performance of the materials used for roofing can change dramatically. As such, the intended performance of the new roof system needs to be properly assessed. This is the primary reason why a Building Approval must be sought when replacing a roof.
The Building Approval is reviewed by a Building Certifier who is responsible for ensuring that the roofing system being proposed is suitable for its intended purpose and compliant with current standards. Those standards include but are not limited to batten size and spacings, and tie-down, including the existing roof frame.
The above assessment is required whether a roof is being replaced due to age and disrepair, or, for example, under an insurance claim following damage from a severe weather event such as a cyclone.
Roofing contractors should ensure their quotes and contracts clearly state whether the property owner or roofing contractor is responsible for obtaining the necessary building approval.
North Queensland’s experience with tropical cyclones has demonstrated that when buildings are constructed to current building standards the new housing stock performs well. Issues can arise, however, if re-roofs have not been performed to current standards or codes. In those instances, significant damage can occur, including total loss of the roof frame.
The QBCC urges contractors who are considering re-roofing works on existing housing stock in Queensland, to ensure that the new roof and existing framing system complies with current standards as far as practicable. With greater scrutiny of re-roofing works through Building Approval assessment processes, it is envisaged that the existing housing stock will become more resilient to cope with severe weather events, such as cyclones or severe storms.
Approvals are valid for twelve months (or six months for a demolition). A Form 57 may be sent out three months before these deadlines to give notice of a lapsing approval. Once the final inspection has been completed and outstanding certificates received, compiled forms including the Form 21 (Finalisation Certificate) will be issued to the council and the owner.
Congratulations! This completes the building application process. We love working with Brisbane’s industry leaders and are ready to quote for the next project so the process can begin again!
Once the Building Approval has been granted, a copy will be sent out to the applicant/ owner instantly, allowing work to start on site.
Building work must be completed within twelve months (or six months for demolitions). An engineer may carry out footings, slab and frame inspections throughout. Our clients inform BA&A when work has been completed. Before a Final Inspection can be scheduled the certificates Form 16 and 15 will be arranged. Information required may include termite protection, glazing, trusses, wet seal, electrical and energy efficiency reports.
BA&A saves you time and money by lodging plans with council on your behalf – using elodgement when possible. The bulk of our projects relate to Brisbane City Council, Moreton Bay Regional Council, Ipswich, Logan and Redland City Councils. The timeline for this aspect of the certification process varies from a few days to several months depending on the project and council processes.
Information that helps assess each unique project
We are committed to a professional and quick assessment process. After the initial assessment stage, BA&A will request further documentation as required so your approval moves forward. Some typical assessment aspects are listed below, though this is not a definitive list.
- Soil test
- Engineering drawings
- Engineering Form 15
- Energy Report
- Energy Form 15
- NCC Assessment
- Build Over Sewer approval
- Build Over Stormwater approval
- Noise report
- Flood study
- QBCC insurance/ bushfire report
- QLeave (portable long service leave)
- Town Planning
- Siting variation
After documentation is collated and assessed, BA&A will be in touch to let you know that your approval is lodged with council.
The Assessment Stage
- After initial checks, your certifier will continue to investigate the approval requirements based on factors unique to each project. Block shape, size and position will affect the assessment and determine what can be built on site.
- At BA&A we work with energy experts and town planning professionals and can streamline your additional services as required. Additional background about energy ratings and the certifier’s role in this collaborative process is explained in Amelia Lee’s interview in our recent podcast.
- The certifier will then issue a Request for Information (RFI).
The second stage is streamlined by the BA&A Administration team (aka miracle workers!), generally in three days.
- Once payment is finalised, and signed engagement agreement returned, the quote stage is complete. A receipt is issued to the client.
- The quote project file is upgraded to a Building Application (BA) on the Building Certification Systems (BCS) dashboard. This is our innovative technology system that compiles project data and facilitates collaboration between all team members.
- The certifier’s assistant allocated to the project will check through the signed Engagement Agreement and engage the appropriate Council.
At Building Approvals and Advice our administration team and certifiers assistants are experienced with providing quotes. We are happy to address any queries to get the approvals process off to a smooth start.
- Clients email through the plans to email@example.com and we aim to prepare a general quote within 48 hours.
- Architectural plans showing as much detail as possible (such as setbacks from boundary or onsite services) allow us to provide a more personalised quote.
- Once payment is processed, will forward the plans to the certifier for assessment.
Our valued clients are invited to join us for this networking event, featuring Guest Speaker Francis Lenny- expert building access consultant.
Enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast while updating your CPD and catching up with fellow industry professionals. Spaces are filling fast so please register using the link below.
Each property is unique, and specifics must be investigated before codes may be applied. For example, block shape, size and position will make a big difference to the assessment and what can be built on site.
- Class – The class of the building will identify which codes are applicable. Understanding the class of the building also identifies the use according to the local authority planning codes.
- Council – The local authority will identify the planning scheme which will be applicable.
- Overlays – identify risks and special conditions for the property
- National Construction Code (NCC) – The NCC identifies the Australian Standards and key building requirements including:
- Fire separation
- Smoke alarm positions
- Wet areas, splashbacks, water proofing
- Glazing required, wet area glazing
- Stairs, handrails, landings
- Termite protection
- Block size – Defines the sizing requirements, creates a building envelope for building work
- House code – relates to height, storeys and use of the building.
- Queensland Development Code (QDC) Building above/ nearby relevant infrastructure (MP 1.4) – assessable if within 3m of the building work.
Image from www.deks.com
“As a Design and Construct builder, we need to have our planning and building approvals completed in a timely and efficient manner. Building Approvals and Advice was introduced to us on our recent Brisbane Corso Fairfield project as a consultant in the design stage. Their design and compliance input was exceptional and facilitated a trouble free approval. Throughout the construction phase, Building Approvals and Advice were very obliging with pro-active advice and keeping us updated with the latest changes to the BCC. We now consider them an important consultant in our design/construct team for future projects.”
“Michael and the team at BA&A were innovative and highly professional to work with and committed to the effective transfer to our software. There is a strong sense of team work, collaboration and willingness to learn within their office that sets them apart from others in their field. We worked together and arranged training to consolidate and manage all certification projects and documents across one platform. Continued communication, honest feedback, and a willingness to adapt and evolve has helped maintain our strong business relationship.”
“I’ve had the opportunity to compare BA&A to other certifiers and I can honestly say they are a great company to deal with, across all parts of the job. This includes their administrative processes, onsite visits and finalisation of the certification process.”
“We really enjoy how easy Building Approvals and Advice are to work with, and we really appreciate their support of our company”.
We are proud to be awarded the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) certification team of the year award for the second year running. Our innovative and technologically advanced approach, teamwork values and recent update of sustainable practice were the main tenets of the award application. The staff team travelled to Melbourne this week to accept the award and enjoy networking and training.
BA&A wish to thank the industry leading architects, pool builders and designers we work with for their support. We look forward to continuing to work together to ensure safer homes, pools and commercial facilities for Queenslanders.
- BA&A are excited to be shortlisted for the RICS Oceania Certification Team of the Year award for 2017- looking forward to networking and training in Melbourne soon!
- We are proud to support sustainability compliance for Queensland homes and pools. Get in touch for well informed advice about sustainable alternatives. BA&A can facilitate collaboration with energy rating and passive design experts http://ow.ly/FpKa30b2jPO
- Our pool certifiers are looking forward to sharing the latest news about building standards at the Pool, Spa and Outdoor Living Expo May 27th and 28th. http://ow.ly/3Ip2309gQJK
We are proud to work with the leading pool builders in Brisbane!
Building Approvals & Advice is thrilled to welcome several pool builders to our VIP client group and we are looking forward to a successful year of streamlined pool certifications in 2017. Now our VIP clients can benefit from a unique login to enable collaboration and access shared files via our new online system- please let us know if we can similarly extend your service.
BA&A manages new pool certification which includes new pool fencing and backwash connection requirements.
For existing pool fencing alterations or where a client requires a Form 23 for the sale or lease of their property, an external Pool Safety Inspector (PSI) can be engaged to carry out the inspection and issue the required certificate.
A reminder that under the updated NCC 2016, all treads require a non-slip surface or a non-slip nosing strip installed. The builder will now be asked for Form 16 so please ensure floor polishers/painters are using the correct products.
Please be aware that polished concrete and tiles are non-compliant and will trigger a nosing strip installation requirement.
A pattern has emerged that carports nearby the front boundary are being built closer than the approved relaxation and in some cases over the front and side boundary. This has resulted in some very costly rectification works and added surveyor costs. At BA&A we support builders to ensure correct distance from front boundary and ensure the surveyor has signed it off on at completion to avoid such issues.
Termite Protection for decks on ground
When constructing decks on ground which are being connected to the main dwelling, some form of separation should be maintained, even if a physical barrier like Kordon or Smart film is used. This will ensure the home owners’ warranty remains current. Additional information at https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/sites/default/files/13_Residential-Timber-Decks-Close-Ground_final.pdf
Window opening protection has been a focus as the Australian Window Association (AWA) recently released a NCC requirement fact sheet.
More details at
Office closure- Christmas/ New Year
We will close for the holiday period on Friday 23rd December and the BA&A office reopens on Monday 16th January 2017.
Need to finalise your building application? Book your Final Inspection and submit the required certificates to complete certification prior to Christmas. It would be appreciated if any outstanding payments and invoices are paid prior to the end of the year. Payment of invoices should be made within 14 days of issue and can be paid by Credit Card (1.4% surcharge applies) or by Direct Debit.
Looking to start building in the New Year? Now is the time to submit any plans or outstanding documentation to ensure your application is ready for a smooth start in 2017.
Our team is supporting Men’s health, you may notice some mos and we are planning “move” events. Follow us on social media and please let us know if you would like to be involved!
The staff at Building Approvals and Advice wish to recognise and thank our clients for their support. As we prepare to reflect and prepare for an equally successful year in 2017 at our yearly vision meeting this month, we would welcome your feedback and suggestions!
To further streamline domestic projects, we are pleased to announce that BA&A can also facilitate town planning across a range of applications. Most of our projects require us to work closely with the Brisbane City Council and Moreton Bay Regional Council and we can collaborate with experienced and professional town planners to ensure your project gets certified first time, on time.
Congratulations Anthony! Having been awarded the Level One qualification for Western Australia, our commercial certification assessments are set to be a growing aspect of our service.
Technology and Innovation
It’s been a busy year for Building Approvals and Advice and we are set to celebrate becoming a (nearly!) paperless office. With every step forward to update our technology to achieve a greener approach to business, we are also enjoying increased mobility, efficient storage and easier ways to collaborate and share information. Using an updated cloud based system and mobile technologies has certainly allowed us to speed the certification process up and improve communication with our clients. Thank you for your support and patience as we have tackled each innovation.
As our website and social networking use is updated we would love to invite our most valued clients to share any feedback. We hope to showcase innovative projects and add some new testimonials, so if you are interested to share your photos, tips and successes please let us know.
Mandated updates to residential smoke alarm systems
From January 1st 2017, new and significantly renovated Queensland homes will require photoelectric, interconnected smoke alarms in all bedrooms and hallways. This legislative change will no doubt create a busy period for the amazing electricians we work with to ensure safer homes for Queenslanders. More information at https://www.qfes.qld.gov.au/communitysafety/smokealarms/pdf/QFES-InfoSheet-SATypes.pdf
Building Approvals & Advice has been named Building Certification Team of the Year at the 2016 RICS Australia Awards. The event celebrated excellence in the land, property and construction industry.
The awards showcased the accomplishments of highly skilled and qualified teams who excel at what they do. In so doing, they promote the highest standards of professionalism in Australia’s built environment sector.The Building Approval and Advice team traveled to Melbourne to represent Queensland and accept the award at a gala event attended by industry leaders from the Asia Pacific region.
Our team took out the Building Certification Team of the Year award for its expert management of many complex projects, including a private residence requiring an intricate bushfire overlay and consultation with many stakeholders to achieve compliancy. The award criteria closely aligned with our company values, particularly innovation and technology, an area of expertise for the team.
Michael Tyrrell, General Manager, said there was no greater accolade than being voted the best in Australia by industry peers in a field of exceptional competitors.
“We are a small company, but size doesn’t matter when it comes to quality. This award is welcome recognition of the professionalism, integrity, communication and teamwork the Building Approval and Advice team brings to every project,” Mr Tyrrell said.
The Building Approvals and Advice team have been shortlisted for the 2016 RICS Building Certification Team of the Year. Flying down to Melbourne the team will be attending the 2016 RICS Award Ceremony on the 19th of May while exploring the various activities Melbourne has to offer.
We are very proud and excited to have been shortlisted by RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) and would like to thank everyone who has contributed to our nomination and to our loyal clients over the past several years.
The nomination for Certification Team of the Year required addressing the Key Criteria revolving around Innovation, Professionalism, Teamwork and Outcomes. Here’s a few snippets from our application:
“Thank you to the team for their professional manner, and helping us get the right information.” – Dan Moore, Moorecorp Pty Ltd
“It’s easy to work with Michael and the BA&A team. The codes are explained in a manner that is easy to understand so the design process can continue to move forward.” – Brad Cross, Jazz Designers
“I’m very happy with the team, any time you need anyone or anything they will always get back to us. We know where we stand and the plans are always checked at the beginning of the project to ensure compliance. Having site meetings to get the right information has been critical to the success of the project. The certifiers were professional to deal with at site meetings and were able to tell the owner, pool builder and builder exactly what had to be done.” – Gary Latimer, Latimer Constructions
Building Approvals and Advice would like to say Thank You to all staff for their contributions and efforts resulting in the nomination and shortlisting for Certification Team of the Year. Best of Luck at the Awards Ceremony in May and enjoy your visit to Melbourne!
If you need advice related to the certification process, save time and money in the process and talk to the experts when you need them.
With our experience and industry connections, BA&A offers fixed quoting and quick turnaround for pool building approvals.
Get the certification you need for progression and speed of delivery with your shop-fitting project.
Ensure that the structural integrity of your project is where it needs to be. With background in structural engineering, the team at BA&A helps underpinners along the building approvals process with ease.
We specialise in multi-residential 3 storey walk ups and small commercial projects, providing the advice and specialties to get you that certification tick.
BA&A supports Brisbane industry leaders with domestic demolition and asbestos removal. We are committed to demolition safety as well as saving our clients time and money.
Building certification is now required for re-roofing work in Queensland. Ensure your project is safe and ready to withstand severe weather events.