If you wish to make changes to your building consent, you can apply for a minor variation or an amendment. A minor variation or amendment must be granted before the building work is carried out.
Check for minor variations that are either processed on-site by an inspector or in-house by a building consent officer.
If the proposed change is outside these limitations, it will require an application for amendment to building consent.
If the proposed change to your building consent does not differ significantly from the plans and specifications to which it relates, it can be processed as an application for a minor variation. You can find more information on what is a minor variation(external link) on the Ministry of Building, Innovation and Employment's (MBIE) website.
Depending on the change, an application for a minor variation can be processed by the Council either by:
All applications for a minor variation must be authorised by the owner.
Minor variations that a building inspector can process on-site are changes that are easily established as not reducing the degree of compliance with the building code. For instance, a product substitution with a comparable product (where that product is not specific to a proprietary system), or minor detail changes that are within the scope of an acceptable solution or the specified manufacture's technical specifications.
Examples of on-site minor variation may include but are not limited to:
Building inspectors can process the above type of minor variations during the building inspection. The details of the minor variation need to be provided in written form (two copies) and require owner or owner's agent approval, but do not require an application for minor variation form to be completed.
The building inspector's decision on the minor variation will be recorded on the inspection site notice. Talk to the building inspector if you are unsure about whether the proposed minor variation can be processed on-site.
A proposed change to a building consent that can be defined as a minor variation may involve a technical assessment beyond what is practicable to be processed by the building inspector while on-site.
These applications for minor variation will be processed by a building consent officer and will be processed, where possible, within 48 hours of receiving a complete application. If the application for a minor variation is considered to be a significant change to the plans and specifications to which the building consent relates, it will be processed as an amendment to a building consent.
Ensure your minor variation is granted prior to undertaking the building work. The approved minor variation documents must be on-site at the next building inspection.
If the proposed change to building consent is significantly different from your plans and specifications to which the building consent relates, it must be processed as an application for an amendment to a building consent.
To apply for an amendment, complete and submit the following form via Online Services(external link) to avoid delays and scanning fees. Alternatively, you can also submit your application at the Civic Building(external link), 53 Hereford St, Christchurch:
Some examples of amendments include, but are not limited to:
An application for amendment is processed in the same way as an original building consent application. The Council is required to process the amendment application within 20 working days, and charges for processing at the same hourly rates. However, unless the changes are extensive, an application for an amendment to a building consent can usually be processed more quickly.
Ensure your amendment is granted prior to undertaking the building work. The approved amended plans and specifications must be on-site at the next building inspection.
A lodgement fee is charged for an application for amendment of a building consent.
You may also incur charges based on the additional time required to review and process the amended consent, or for additional inspections.
There is a fixed fee for minor variations.
Refer to the building consents fee schedule to view amendment and minor variation fees.