A building project can be a tricky process, from finding the right parcel of land through to organising your trades, there are plenty of puzzle pieces that need to fall into place for a successful end product. Below is a collection of commonly asked questions, resources, downloads and articles that will make the process simple.
What is certification?
A private certifier will present your building application to council on your behalf, review the application and issue approval of the plans prior to construction commencing. The certifier is also responsible for assessing construction during and after the building process and finalising your building certification.
Will I Need Building Approval?
Usually, yes. Any structural building work including projects like carports, pergolas, decks, verandahs, home extensions even garden sheds and retaining walls higher than 1m will require Building Approval in Queensland.
What is the minimum setback for a structure on my property?
The ‘minimum front boundary clearance’ is 6 metres, but there can be cases where a reduced distance may be allowed. Structures such as carports can be giving permission, or in some cases, the local authority may have stipulated special boundary setbacks. Different areas of Brisbane have different setback requirements.
Can I change my plans after they have been approved?
Yes, you can alter your approved stamped plans, although it will depend on the extent of the alteration. Making changes to stamped plans requires a Form 2 from the QBCC to be completed and returned to your building certifier to make an assessment and update your plans.
Should we renovate or start over?
This is a tough question and there are a number of factors you will need to consider before you can choose the best path for your project. Firstly, are you allowed to demolish? In Brisbane many homes are protected from demolition due to character overlays and zoning, this may make the decision for you. Secondly, the size and scope of your plan may dictate your decision. Typically, on a square metre basis, it is cheaper to knock down and rebuild than to renovate, but not in all cases. Remember, many older homes come with character even without a character overlay and working with the existing character of your home may create an amazingly unique development.
Which builder should we use?
The best recommendation is word of mouth. If friends or family have passed on positive experiences, by all means, check them out. It is important to choose a builder you get a good feel about, but don’t rely entirely on your gut. Ask to see examples of their previous work, do a history check on the QBCC website (qbcc.qld.gov.au) and get up to 3 quotes.
The Outside Perspective can also recommend a number of reputable builders that we have developed great working relationships with.
Should our builder use a contract?
Always. Both the QBCC and Master Builders provides building contracts and they should be in place for projects both big and small. The use of proper contracts ensures your building project will travel smoothly, have no hidden fees, be insured and be legal.