A code compliance certificate is the final sign-off in completing consented building work. It gives you and future owners an assurance that the building work was done to the appropriate standards.

An owner must apply for a code compliance certificate after all building work to be carried out under a building consent is completed. The application must be made as soon as practicable after the building work is completed and in the prescribed form.

You or your agent should provide construction documentation to the Council as the build progresses to help speed up the process.

It is possible for the Council to make a decision to issue the code compliance certificate without an application if it can be satisfied that the requirements of Section 94 of the Building Act 2004(external link) have been met.

A code compliance certificate is issued by the Council under (external link)Section 95 of the Building Act 2004(external link) when it is satisfied on reasonable grounds that the building work complies with the building consent.

Lack of a code compliance certificate may prevent a bank from releasing a final builder payment or increase the cost of insurance cover. If you don’t get one you may also have trouble selling your house.

We encourage you, or your agent, to provide the construction documentation, as listed on the building consent construction documentation and advice notes document provided with your building consent, throughout the build – it will assist with the timely processing of your application for a code compliance certificate.

Submit documents using Online Services via the upload additional information option.

An owner must apply for a code compliance certificate after all building work to be carried out under a building consent is completed. The application must be made as soon as practicable after the building work is completed and in the prescribed form. All construction documentation should be submitted at this time, if not previously submitted.

Please refer to the building consent construction documentation and advice notes provided with your building consent at the time of issue.

Download the application for a code compliance certificate [PDF, 206 KB] (Form 6 B-011) or you can also pick up an application form from any Council service desk and submit your application with any attachments using one of the following methods:

  • Online: Online Services(external link).
  • Email codecompliance@ccc.govt.nz with the building consent number in the subject line.
  • Post your application to Consenting & Compliance Group, PO Box 73013, Christchurch 8154 (additional costs apply).
  • Hand deliver to Civic Offices, 53 Hereford Street, Christchurch Central or dropped off at any Council Service Desk (additional costs apply).

Fees vary for applications depending on the type of project.

Where the cost to process the code compliance certificate application exceeds the fee paid when the building consent was issued then additional time may be charged at the relevant officer charge out rate.

Please refer to the Building Consents Fee Schedule.

When your application is received and is accepted, the statutory time frame (or statutory clock), of 20 working days for processing, begins.

We make a decision on your code compliance certificate within 20 working days.

During the processing of your application, the statutory clock stops if we have to send you a request for information.

Once all the information is provided the statutory clock will be started again and processing of the application will resume.

Any outstanding fees must be paid before the code compliance certificate (Form 7) is issued. This includes payment of any applicable development contribution

A historic consent is defined as a building consent where the first inspection was undertaken more than five years ago and the most recent inspection undertaken more than six months before the application for code compliance certificate was received.

In these cases, the Council may choose to undertake a desktop review of the building consent file and undertake a further onsite inspection to ensure all the building work has been carried out and is still in accordance with the building consent before deciding whether to issue a code compliance certificate.

This inspection will take into consideration the passage of time since building work was substantially completed and the current condition of the building work.

Historic consents

Why hasn’t Council dealt with this before now? 
There could be a number of reasons why this has not been brought to your attention previously. The aftermath following the Canterbury earthquakes of 2010/11 disrupted some of the business as usual processes. However, reminder letters were sent out with regards to many outstanding building consents on record. The owner may have changed since the building consent was issued and/or the final inspection was undertaken.

What happens if I do not obtain a code compliance certificate? 
It may have an impact on the insurance policies you have. The status of a code compliance certificate decision will be listed on the LIM (Land Information Memorandum) and it may have implications if you ever decide to sell your property. The Building Act 2004 requires you to obtain a code compliance certificate following completion of building work carried out under a building consent.

What information might I need to supply? 
The first step would be to obtain the property file. A building inspector will also review the property file and will highlight any information or documentation which may be required to assist in your application for a code compliance certificate. Information may include EQC documentation (scope of works etc.), engineer’s reports and certificates, energy work certificates.

What happens if I can’t locate all of the documents I need? 
The building inspector will be able to assist and provide guidance should this situation arise. Additional inspections by the Council and/or external engineers/building surveyors may be required to verify construction, ongoing durability of a building and compliance with the building code.

How much will it cost? 
We will allocate the application to a building inspector who will review your building consent file and inspection documentation. Additional inspections by the Council will incur additional charges. These will be charged out at the hourly rate.  Please refer to Christchurch City Council fees and charges.

You may also need additional inspections to undertaken by external consultants that can add to the cost. We recommend you seek advice on costs prior to engaging external consultants.

Do I need a modification of the durability periods described in the building code?
In the normal course of events, the code compliance certificate is issued at about the same time the work is completed, and the durability periods, therefore, commence from the date of issue of the code compliance certificate.

If the code compliance certificate was not sought until a significant number of years after the completion of the building work, the building consent authority might not be satisfied that the building elements will comply with Clause B2.3.1.

This is because the building elements have already been in service for a significant period of time, and their durability periods will have been either partly or fully expended. Your building inspector will be able to advise if this is the case.

For more information refer to the MBIE(external link) website for more information of the durability periods described in Clause B2.3.1.

How long will it take? 
This can depend on a number of factors and availability of evidence for the inspector be able to verify the building work complies with the building consent. Additional on-site inspections may be required to verify ongoing structural, weather-tightness and durability requirements. Once a passed final inspection has been achieved it can take up to 20 working days for the code compliance certificate to be issued.

Do I have any other options? 
Following this process, if a final inspection cannot be passed or a code compliance certificate cannot be issued then you can ask for a determination through MBIE. There is information on this process here: Determinations (MBIE).(external link)

The Council may refuse to issue a code compliance certificate if:

  • the building work has not been completed; or
  • we do not have adequate evidence that the building work complies with your building consent (this may include required documentation not being supplied); or
  • for a building consent issued under the 1991 Act we do not have adequate evidence that the building work complies with the building code.

If you haven't applied for a code compliance certificate within two years of the building consent being granted, under section 93(2)(b) the Council must make a decision whether to issue a code compliance certificate. You will be contacted about this.

If your building has specified systems(external link) a compliance schedule (or an amended compliance schedule) will be issued with the code compliance certificate.

The building consent will have stated if a compliance schedule (or an amended compliance schedule) is required as a result of the building work. It will list the specified systems that must be covered by the compliance schedule and their performance standards

A compliance schedule describes each of the specified systems, states their performance standards and describes the inspection, maintenance, and reporting procedures for the specified systems.

If the building is being issued with a new compliance schedule, a compliance schedule statement (Form 10) will also be attached to the code compliance certificate. This statement must be displayed publicly in the building and is valid for 12 months.

At each anniversary of the issue of the compliance schedule, you must supply the Council with a building warrant of fitness. A building warrant of fitness states that the inspection, maintenance, and reporting procedures of the compliance schedule have been fully complied with during the previous 12 months. A copy of the building warrant of fitness must be publicly displayed in the building.

Premises affected by building work cannot be used by members of the public until the code compliance certificate is issued unless a certificate for public use has been issued.

Any breach could result in enforcement action by the Council.

If you are building or arranging to have built, a household unit for the purpose of selling it you must get a code compliance certificate before completing the sale, or before allowing the purchaser to take possession of the household unit.

The only exception is if the on-seller and purchaser sign an agreement to waive this requirement.

There is a prescribed form(external link) for this agreement which advises of any potential extra costs being passed on to the buyer. For further reading see Building Act 2004 – revision section 362V(external link)