A dwelling is a building or portion of a building being used, adapted, designed or intended to be used for the purpose of human habitation on a permanent basis by a single person, a single family or no more than six persons who do not comprise a single family.

What can I build?

The Building Code of Australia (BCA), together with the City’s Town Planning Scheme and adopted policies, has specific minimum requirements relating to the construction and location of dwellings.

The BCA is complex and advice regarding the design of your proposed dwelling should be sought from your Architect or registered Building Surveyor.

Do I need a building permit?

The Building Act 2011 states that any new dwelling, additions and structural alterations to a dwelling require a Building Permit.

A Building Permit may not be required for the renovation, alteration, improvement repair or maintenance of a building or incidental structure, providing the building work will not adversely affect the structural soundness of the building or incidental structure.

How long does it take to get a building permit?

The Building Act 2011 sets time frames in which the City has to assess and determine an application for a Building Permit. The applicable timeframe depends on whether the building application is Uncertified or Certified.

It is important that you are aware of allowed time frames prior to lodging your application and that your application documentation is complete.

Should further information be required by the City in order to assess the building application, the applicant may be given up to 21 calendar days in which to provide the outstanding information. If the information is not received within the 21 days, the application may be refused unless mutual consent has been granted for a further 21 days.

Uncertified Building Applications (BA2)

An Uncertified Building Application can be submitted for Class 1 structures, such as a dwelling.

The City has up to 25 business days from the date of lodgment to assess the application and issue a Building Permit. The required Certificate of Design Compliance will be issued by the City as part of the application process.

Certified Building Applications (BA1)

A Certified Building Application can be submitted for all Class of structures.

Prior to lodging a Certified Building Application to the City, a private Building Surveying Practitioner would need to be engaged to issue a Certificate of Design Compliance.

The City has up to 10 business days from the date of lodgment to assess the application and issue a Building Permit.

How long until my permit expires?

A Building Permit is generally valid for two years from the date on which it was granted.

If more time is required to complete the building works, you can apply for an extension of time of up to a further six months by making a formal application and paying the prescribed fee.

What happens when I have completed my building works?

The nominated builder on the Building Permit must submit a Notice of Completion BA7 form to the City within seven days of completing the prescribed building works.


If you would like to submit an application to build a dwelling, you will need to include the following information in your application:

  • A complete BA1 (certified) or BA2 (uncertified) application form
    • Including all owner's details, construction materials and costings
    • Signed by a registered builder, including the builder's registration number or owner-builder approval where the value of works is greater than $20,000
    • Including applicant's contact details

BA1 & BA2 application forms are available from the City's website here (link) or from the front counter of the City's Administration Centre

  • A Certificate of Design Compliance.(for certified applications only)

This must be issued by a registered Building Surveying Practitioner and include all documentation as referenced on the Certificate of Design Compliance

  • Home Indemnity Insurance Certificate from an approved insurer
    • Required for residential works with a construction valued greater than $20,000
    • Not required for owner-builder
  • Payment of fees

Refer to the City's Fees and Charges for full fee details (link). Fee details are also available from the front counter of the City's Administration Centre.

  • Building Construction Industry Training Fund (BCITF) levy payment form (for building works greater than $20,000)

Required in full and signed for works over $20,000 - refer to the City's Fees and Charges for full free details (link).

  • Site plan drawn to scale (1:200), showing:
    • Location of proposed dwelling/additions
    • Location of all existing structures on the property
    • Measurement from the boundaries to the proposed dwelling/additions
    • Location of any septic tanks and leach drains (if applicable)
  • Construction details drawn to scale (1:100), showing:
    • Detailed floor plan and elevations
    • Cross-section details
  • Structural Engineer's certification

More information

This information is intended as a guide only. The City disclaims any liability for damages sustained by a person acting on the basis of this information.

For more information please contact the City's building services team on 9273 6000 or email mail@vincent.wa.gov.au.

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