Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014 – Client Summary
Before construction work starts on site, the Building Control Authority (BCA) must be notified by a commencement notice, to be submitted between 14 and 28 days prior to commencement. This was also the case before these new Regulations, but the form of this commencement notice submission has now changed. Along with the actual commencement notice and a commencement fee of €30 per building, the following information must also be submitted:
- Working drawings and design documents, either submitted with the commencement notice, and/or a schedule of further design documents to be prepared and submitted later.
- An online assessment via the Building Control Management System on the localgov.ie website, showing how the proposed works will conform to the building regulations.
- A Certificate of Compliance signed by the Designer, stating that the works as designed conform to the Building Regulations. The Designer must be a Chartered Engineer, a Registered Architect or a Registered Surveyor.
- A Notice of Assignment of a person to inspect and certify the works, known as the Assigned Certifier, and an undertaking by this person to carry out this role. The Assigned Certifier must also be a Chartered Engineer, a Registered Architect or a Registered Surveyor.
- A Notice of Assignment of a Builder, and an undertaking by this Builder to carry out the works in accordance with the Building Regulations. The Builder must be the Principal or Director of a building company, and from 2015 the Builder will need to be registered on the Construction Industry Federation’s CIRI register.
- A preliminary inspection plan, detailing the site visits to take place during the works.
As the owner of the building, it is ultimately your responsibility to appoint a competent Designer, Assigned Certifier and Builder to ensure that the works will be carried out in accordance with the Building Regulations. We, Hoctor Smyth, can take on the Designer and Assigned Certifier roles, and assist you with choosing a Builder.
On completion, a Certificate of Compliance must be signed by the Assigned Certifier and the Builder, certifying that the works were carried out in accordance with the Building Regulations. This must be lodged with the Building Control Authority and placed on a public register before the building can be opened, occupied or used.
Prior to starting any works on site, it is crucial that the Designer, Assigned Certifier and Builder roles be assigned and undertaken by competent individuals, and that the commencement notice be properly submitted. If works start on site before a valid commencement notice is submitted, the owner will have committed an offense under the new regulations, and there is no provision in the regulations to retrospectively submit a commencement notice. On completion, the owner will not be able to submit a Certificate of Compliance, and the building will not be recorded on the public register, which may affect your ability to sell the building, or draw down your remaining mortgage.
These new Regulations will have the greatest effect on Direct Labour projects, as the owner will now have to assign a Builder to take overall responsibility for ensuring that the works are carried out in accordance with the Building Regulations. This Builder will need to be involved with all stages of the construction works, from commencement to completion, thereby negating the advantages of building by Direct Labour in the first place.
See the BCMS section of the www.localgov.ie website for further information and FAQs.