Renovating and Building
Under Western Australian legislation a building permit is required before commencement of most building work.
Formal approval (a building permit) is required for any building work involving the development of new structures, alterations or extensions and changes in ground levels. These include:
Swimming pools, spas and barriers
Commercial buildings including fitouts and refurbishments
Changes to levels (i.e. cut and/or fill)
The Building Regulations 2012 details some building work for which a Building Permit is not required. Information on Exempted Building Permits.
If the total value of the work exceeds $20,000 a permit is issued to a registered builder, or in some circumstances, an owner builder.
The building permit issued for the particular work is void if the work is not commenced within the first 12 months of the date of issue, and the work shall be completed within 24 months of the issue of the permit.
It is important to ensure sufficient time for assessment. No work is to commence without the building permit.
Application Forms and Statutory Declaration
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Fees are set by State government via Statute.
Development of commercial and industrial lots, or for three (3) or more group dwellings etc requires, prior to applying for a building permit, assessment and approval of a development application by the City of Rockingham’s Planning Services.
Town Planning consent is not required for any ‘permitted development’ on ‘special residential’ and ‘special rural’ zoned land if the proposal is within the approved building envelope or where no building envelope exists and is compliant with the setbacks prescribed by Town Planning Scheme No. 2, except for any development within the Warnbro Dunes and Singleton Ridgeline lots.
If you are unsure if Town Planning consent is required for application, you should contact the City's Planning Services on 9528 0341.
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Copies of Building Plans
The City of Rockingham will, where possible, provide copies of approved building plans on request to building owners.
The City of Rockingham's building records are generally complete back to the 1980’s however prior to that time not all records are held.
Unfortunately the qualities of some of the older property’s plans are poor.
With more recent records we are able to provide copies of the following information:
Housing Indemnity Insurance
Levels of ground prior to works commencing.
Copies of house plans should be passed to your real estate agent when selling your property so that prospective purchasers can see that all structures on the property have been approved by the City of Rockingham.
Who can request copies of building plans?
Only the owner or mortgagee is generally entitled to view or request copies of the City of Rockingham's building records.
The owner includes:
The person shown in the City of Rockingham's records as being the owner
A person who is authorised in writing by the owner.
The City of Rockingham will require proof of identity upon collection of the plans.
How long does it take to obtain a copy of plans?
Copies of plans will be ready for collection after 11am, 48 hours after initial request.
How much does it cost?
A non-refundable application fee for a full set of plans is payable. You can pay in person, by credit card over the telephone, or send in a cheque or money order. A fees schedule is available above.
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Any cutting or filling of lots, vacant or otherwise, requires the matter to be determined under a building permit application, and, for broad acres sites, via a subdivision application to the City of Rockingham's Planning Services.
The impact on the adjoining lots, the appropriateness of the proposed retaining wall and fill material needs to be assessed.
Adversely Affecting Adjoining Land
There is a new concept introduced by the Act known as adversely affecting adjoining land. By definition in the Act, adversely affecting other land includes:-
(a) Reduce the stability or bearing capacity of the adjoining land or a building or structure on the land;
(b) Damage, or reduce the structural adequacy of, a building or structure on the land; or
(c) The changing of the natural site drainage of the land or existing or future buildings or structures on the land.
Where any of the above occurs, the applicant or builder must get the permission of all owners of the adjoining property. If they cannot get this, the applicant or builder must apply for a Court Order. The City recommends that you get legal advice on how this will affect you.
Adversely affecting adjoining land could be where cut and fill is to take place and requires the erection of retaining walls along a boundary line. If the adjoining lot ends up higher than the subject lot, you will generally adversely affect the adjoining lot.
Another common example is where a swimming pool is to be constructed close to a boundary. If the adjoining lot will be adversely affected, (eg by reduction in the bearing capacity), the permission of all owners of that lot must be obtained prior to making an application for a Building Permit.
Placing signs seeking 'clean fill' is not acceptable. The material frequently placed is neither of a quality nor compaction suitable for building upon. The 'fill' may then be required to be removed, the natural ground prepared by the removal of deleterious material and 'clean sand' placed. This can be an expensive fix.
Contact Building Services for information relating to the particular situation.
Soakwells for the disposal of stormwater runoff (roof water or surface water) need to be constructed such that the distance from all buildings and boundaries must be not less than the depth of the soakwell (measured from ground level).
All stormwater is required to be disposed of within the confines of the subject lot without detriment to any adjoining land.
With the smaller lots, the location of soakwells needs to be considered carefully to obtain the necessary clearances. Often this will mean locating them in the front or back yards of the property.
For general building enquiries please contact Building Services.
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