If an approved plan showing the work cannot be found in the Council Site file, there is no proof that Council has approved the work, thus the works are likely to have been completed without a Permit or Consent. A Building Consent cannot be issued retrospectively, be must proven to be acceptable by the Council by one of two methods:
1. Safe and Sanitary Report
Only applies to work prior to July 1992. This report must be prepared by an experienced consultant to ensure that the property is in a ‘Safe and Sanitary’ condition. If the council accepts the safe and sanitary report the report will be held on the property’s file and will show on the LIM. The report may identify remedial work needed to bring the structure up to the required standards. A building consent may be required for any remedial work.
2. Certificate of Acceptance
An application to council that provides a limited assurance in that the council has inspected unauthorised, completed building work and found no obvious defects or departures from the Building Code. The council will assess your application and, if it is satisfied the building work complies with the building code will issue a certificate. You will need to provide evidence of how the work complies with the building code, including those parts of the work that the council cannot inspect. This is covered in a detailed written report describing construction methods and materials used and the overall condition of the works and address whether the works were in compliance with the relevant Standards applying at the time of construction. An engineer may be required to verify or provide calculations for structural elements. In addition to the report, plans and specifications must be prepared which detail the works and the construction methods used.
Do I need a Resource Consent?
Regardless when the work was constructed, if the unapproved work does not meet the planning development controls relevant to your property or a resource consent was needed, then you will need to apply for a retrospective Resource Consent. This Resource Consent application will require an Assessment of Effects on the Environment, outlining how much the infringements to the District Plan rules will affect the neighbourhood and natural environment, and describe what measures are used to mitigate these affects. In addition, plans that show; site boundaries, trees with their drip lines, building coverage calculations, with elevations required to show the boundary height controls and infringements.