New Building Act 1993 changes July 4, 2016

2016 Changes to the Building Act 1993

Victorian Building AuthorityEvery year we find adjustment changes to varies matters now under the control via Victorian Building Authority for Building Act and associated entities such as Plumbing, Architectural, Owners Builders and more.

As the VBA web site states “Changes have been made to the VBA’s powers and functions under the Building Act 1993. Some of these changes may affect your rights and duties under the law.”

This section of the VBA website holds information about:

  • how these changes relate to you as a building practitioner, building surveyor or owner-builder
  • when the changes come into effect
  • what will be different when the changes come into effect, and
  • any specific things that apply during the transition to the new laws.

The link will take you to main site whereby you may web surf to area of most interest to you. Follow the Changes to Building Act 1993.

owner builderWe see certain strengthening of powers and a further layering of checking and cross checking ensuring the industries inefficiency remains without much progress towards any real reform or a balancing between planning and building or review of the changing size of lots and consumer requirements.
Some new powers will hopefully maintain a striding towards removing from industry of cowboys but I see significant many good guys hurt and frightened away in the meantime.

Owner Builders –

Owner Builders will now need to better realise the issues of “being the owner builder” as the rules are the same for all and the playing field will be inspected regularly.

This will make being an owner builder more of a chore, cost will rise significantly and especially for those real small projects such as a verandah and deck. The current status is one rule for all so all building and small project documentation and requirements now the same totally as a new dwelling.

One good change is the need to get VBA consent has risen to $16,000. This amount to me remains to low for both owner builder consent requirement plus also for need to get Home Owners Warranty Insurance. Both should be more around $25,000 so the small “addon” building ie:class 10b, is not over burdened by cost and regulation.

Building Plans

The new minimum plan requirements are being enforced. These are more of an enforcement of the rules that actual new rules but, by placing significant pressure on all building surveyors to ensure documentation for big or small are the same, then time and cost will kick in for small projects as never before.
As Building Drafting company we get it and understand fully the issues but our customers might not be so understanding. We worry many more will roll the dice on avoiding the undertaking of getting a building permit due to cost and red tape increasing.
Simply many old plans do not have the level of detail required today even for a verandah. So getting that detail, even getting the old plans (as often council records poor although now improving due to digital age) then producing plans for small class 10b projects to the standard now required will be more time consuming and will bring with that extra costs.
Politically it will be a time bomb but for now its reality. It needs proper reform for this sector.
Link to what’s required here VBA Practise Note Building Plans Documentation
We at The Project Centre – Narre Warren and a member of the BDAV, are specialists in Class 10b building with over 20 years ImagesBDAV-LOGO.jpgexperience in projects such as garages, carport’s, verandahs, deck’s and other external “add-on” extensions or out buildings. We know whats required and can help you your project.

Contact Us

Head Office – Beaconsfield
Floor 1, Office 1,  70 Old Princes Highway
Beaconsfield Vic. 3807  Phone: (BH) (03) 9769 3517