Building certification process

This page has information for building project owners about the responsibilities shared between the project owner, the builder and a building certifier at each stage of a building project. 

Under Northern Territory (NT) law, you must engage a registered, private building certifier to do the building certification for most building projects. Read more about work that requires permits and engaging a registered building certifier.

You must provide the right permits and paperwork to your building certifier before, during and on completion of building work to get occupancy certification.

Before building work begins

Before construction starts, a building certifier must assess your building plans for compliance with the law, and issue a building permit for the building work. 

You must comply with all conditions of the building permit before and during the work. 

The building certifier must provide a copy of the building permit to you or your agent.

The certifier must submit a copy of the permit, plans and relevant documents to the Director of Building Control at Building Advisory Services in the Department of Lands, Planning and the Environment.

The land owner may access these records in the future. Read about access to building files.

Construction and site inspections

The building permit lists the inspections needed at each stage of construction. 

You or your builder must contact your building certifier to arrange each inspection. 

Most building permits require that your building certifier conduct the following inspections:

  • pre-pour inspection of footings and slab
  • frame inspection
  • block work reinforcing inspection
  • fire separation inspection
  • wet areas inspection
  • final inspection.

Your building permit may list extra inspections that your building certifier will need to conduct.

You should not continue work beyond an inspection stage until the building certifier has conducted the required inspection for that stage and authorised work to proceed.

If these inspections do not occur, and work does proceed, there may be delays and difficulties in finalising certification at the end of construction. Without occupancy certification at the end of construction, you are not allowed to legally occupy your building. 

The building certifier is not a site supervisor and their inspections do not replace day-to-day site supervision of the works. You and your builder share responsibility for ensuring the building works are constructed to an acceptable standard. 

Project completion

Once completed, the builder must sign a legal declaration stating the building work has been carried out in accordance with the building permit.

Print all pages in this section

Last updated: 27 June 2017