Building consent authority glossary

Building Consent (BC)

A building consent is the formal approval granted by a building consent authority that building works meet the requirements of the New Zealand Building Act, Building Regulations, and Building Code. A building consent is required before you can begin building works.

Building Code

Sets out the rules for the construction, alteration, demolition and maintenance of new and existing buildings in New Zealand.

Building Warrant of Fitness (BWOF)

A building warrant of fitness (BWOF) is an annual certificate that confirms that:


Code Compliance Certificate


Certificate of Acceptance


Your building consent may be granted subject to subject to five conditions. Owners, builders and/or developers should ensure that they understand them and their implications IF any of the following conditions are stated:

Certificate for Public Use (CPU)

If the public uses all or part of your building, and you want them to access it before your building work has been signed off as complete, you can apply to your council for a certificate for public use. Your application will need to show that all or part of the building (whatever you are applying for) can be used safely by members of the public.

If you don't have a certificate for public use, you could be fined up to $200,000, and fined up to a further $20,000 for every day or part of a day the offence continues.

Read more on Certificates for Public Use.(external link)

Compliance Schedule (CS)

Buildings containing certain safety and essential systems, known as specified systems, are issued with a compliance schedule and regular inspections (not including buildings used wholly or partly as a single household unit).

Read more on Compliance schedules here.(external link)


Development Contributions. (external link) 


The Building Consent Authority must grant a building consent when it is satisfied on reasonable grounds that the building work will comply with the Building Code(external link) when the building work is completed as per the consented plans.


When the building consent has been granted and the invoice has been paid in full.

Specified life extension 

Some buildings have a specified intended lifespan, either due to code compliance inadequacies or because they were constructed to be temporary buildings. When a building consent is issued for a building like this, it is subject to the condition that it be altered, demolished or removed before the end of its life.

However, Council can approve an ‘extension of life’ if satisfied that the building can continue to perform for a longer period.

If you would like to extend the life of a building, you’ll need to provide Council with written notice.

Read more on extension to specified life here.(external link)


Specified Systems

Specified systems are systems or features that contribute to the proper functioning of the building. Specified systems require ongoing inspection and maintenance to ensure they function as required, because if they fail to operate properly, they have the potential to adversely affect health or life safety.


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