Building Blocks: The Difference Between Building and Planning Permits

When it comes to building or renovating a property in Australia, it’s essential to obtain the necessary permits from the local council or regulatory authority. Two of the most common permits required are building permits and planning permits. While they may seem similar, there are key differences between the two that homeowners and developers should understand.

Building Permits

A building permit is a legal requirement for any construction work that involves the alteration, demolition or building of a structure. This permit ensures that the construction project complies with the Building Code of Australia (BCA) and any relevant state or territory legislation. Building permits are issued by the local council or a private building surveyor who has been authorized by the council to issue permits.

Planning Permits

On the other hand, a planning permit is required for any development that requires a change to the land use or affects the surrounding area. This permit assesses the impact of the proposed development on the local community and environment, including factors such as noise, traffic, and heritage values. Planning permits are issued by the local council or a planning authority in the state or territory.

One of the key differences between building and planning permits is their purpose. A building permit is concerned with the technical aspects of construction, such as ensuring that the structure meets safety and quality standards. A planning permit, on the other hand, is focused on the impact of the development on the surrounding area and community.

Another difference is the timeline for obtaining the permits. Generally, a building permit is required before construction work can begin, while a planning permit is required before the application for a building permit can be made. This means that the planning process can be lengthier, as it involves a more comprehensive assessment of the proposed development.

In conclusion, building permits and planning permits are both essential for construction and development projects in Australia. Understanding the difference between the two permits can help homeowners and developers navigate the regulatory process more efficiently and effectively. It’s recommended to consult with a professional such as a building surveyor or town planner to ensure compliance with all relevant legislation and regulations, or contact us today to speak with us about your upcoming project.

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