The Building Act 2004 introduced the ability for a Council to recognise and accept work that has been carried out without building consent, or where another building consent authority cannot issue a code compliance certificate (e.g. a former private building certifier).
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) Building and Housing has produced guidance for building officials (external link)that indicates the requirements for applying for a certificate of acceptance and situations where one is needed.
What is a certificate of acceptance?
A certificate of acceptance is a document from the Council that states that it has reasonable grounds to believe that specified building work complies with the building code.
An application can be made if building work has taken place after 1 July 1992 and:
- An owner or previous owner carried out or arranged building work without a building consent (but consent should have been obtained); or
- Where building work has been carried out urgently in accordance with Section 42 of the Building Act 2004; or
- In circumstances where a private building consent authority is unable or refuses to issue a code compliance certificate.
The certificate may be qualified to identify parts that could not be inspected by the Council, in which case the Council's liability is limited to the extent that it was able to inspect. It may also exclude building work that does not comply or where there is not enough evidence that it complies.
What will future purchasers know about the certificate of acceptance?
A land information memorandum will show the certificate of acceptance application and the decision made.
If a purchaser requests to see the property file, all documentation associated with the application will be made available.