It was standard practice for purchasers of newly-constructed property to accept an opinion on compliance with building regulations from the vendor’s architect. Opinions generally issued following completion of development supported by opinions of various contractors.

With a view to improving standards and ensuring that building regulations are complied with, new building regulations, which will take effect on 1 March 2014, require:

  • Appointment by the developer of an assigned certifier, who can be a registered architect, engineer or building surveyor, to inspect works at key stages during construction
  • Submission of compliance drawings and documentation to local building authorities
  • Submission of undertakings by the assigned certifier to use reasonable skill, care and diligence in the inspection of the works
  • Submission of undertakings by the builder that they are competent to undertake the works, that they will complete the works in compliance with the building regulations and that they will co-operate with any inspections
  • Submission of mandatory certificates of compliance in statutory form by the designer prior to construction and by the assigned certifier and builder after completion

Most of the additional requirements under the new regulations are limited to works involving the design and construction of a new dwelling, an extension to a dwelling involving a total floor area greater than 40 square meters and those works requiring an application for a fire safety certificate.