QLD – HENDRY building certifiers advise that a Development Permit Search is not always adequate for a building audit involving a pre-purchase appraisal. Our Brisbane office has noticed an increase in new purchasers that were unaware of incomplete building works that remained outstanding at the time of purchasing their new property after we performed a building audit.

It is important that developers, owners and their agents are aware that an approval search will only identify a Development Permit or a number of Development Permits relevant to a property.

If a prospective owner is aware that building work has been undertaken on a property then additional searches should be undertaken during a building audit to identify at what stage those building works were inspected and completed.

The following searches that can assist a building audit are provided by Brisbane City Council at the time of this article:

Type A search identifies what approvals have been issued for that site.

Type B search provides information on the status of an individual approval for a site and a list of any inspections that have been undertaken relating to an individual approval.  This search is important where the purchaser needs to clarify whether or not the building works have been completed and whether a final inspection certificate has been issued on building works.  Note, records for domestic uses, for example, dwellings or carports, are kept from the mid to late 1980’s onwards.

Type C search is a Certificate of Classification search that is applicable for class 1a (attached – townhouse type) and all 2 – 9 buildings (apartments, commercial or industrial buildings).  It is used to access a copy of a Certificate of Classification which is required to allow legal occupation buildings of these classes under section 114 of the Building Act 1975.  The maximum penalty for breach is 165 penalty units.

Type D search identifies if any notices have been issued pursuant to the Building Act 1975 on the property.

Type E search – A letter of information on an individual approval will provide the cost of the building work and the name of the architect and/or engineer, the name of the builder and a copy of the termite certificate if these items are on the file.

Building Legislation Table

Refer to our Building Legislation table for further information on the building control process.