Work that requires permits

This page has information about building work in the Northern Territory (NT) that by law requires both a building permit before work starts, and for work to be certified or approved at the end of construction before occupancy.

Your project may also need a development permit and other permits and approvals to comply with the Building Act. 

Work that needs a building permit

Building permits are only required in building control areas of the NT. Read about building control areas.

A building permit sets conditions on the construction, demolition or alteration of a building. It details your building work and states that your plans are lawful before construction begins. 

Check the table below to see if you need a building permit for your project.

For a residential building or associated structure you may also need a building contract and fidelity fund certificate. You may have to use a registered builder. Read about building or renovating a home.

Building work

Building permit

Other requirements

New house

Required

Read about building or renovating a home
New units, townhouses or apartments Required  

Shop or office fit-out

Required

 

Warehouse

Required

 

Relocating an existing house to a new location

Required

Read about building or renovating a home

Renovating a bathroom in a house - changing walls, fixtures or plumbing

Required

Read about renovating and refurbishing wet areas and building or renovating a home

Renovating a bathroom in a house - no change to walls, fixtures or plumbing

Not required

Read about renovating and refurbishing wet areas and building or renovating a home

Alterations or extensions to an existing house - increase to floor area

Required

Read about building or renovating a home

Alterations or extensions to an existing house - no increase in floor area

Required

Read about building or renovating a home

Existing house - changing windows, reroofing or replacing sheeting

Required

Read about building or renovating a home

Additions to an existing house - skylight, roof vents or satellite dish

Required - some exemptions apply

Read about exemptions for satellite dishes, skylights and roof ventilators

Solar hot-water system

Required

Go to the Building Advisory Committee website to read about solar hot-water systems

Solar photovoltaic installation

Required

Read about solar photovoltaic installations and solar voltaic installations - non cyclonic regions.

Carport or verandah addition to an existing house

Required - some exemptions apply

Read about exemptions for building a garden shed, carport, fence or shade structure and building or renovating a home

Garden shed or workshop

Required - some exemptions apply

Read about exemptions for building a garden shed, carport, fence or shade structure and building or renovating a home

Pergola or shade structure

Required - some exemptions apply

Read about exemptions for building a garden shed, carport, fence or shade structure and building or renovating a home

New fence or renovating an existing fence

Required - some exemptions apply

Read about exemptions for building a garden shed, carport, fence or shade structure

New retaining wall - supporting building work

Required

 

New retaining wall - not supporting building work

Required if over 600mm in height

 

Swimming pools

Not required

Read more about swimming pools and spas

Development permit

You must have a development permit, also known as a planning permit, if your project is either of the following:

  • a building type or land use that requires consent under the NT Planning Scheme
  • or permitted by the NT Planning Scheme but does not meet the scheme requirements.

If you need a development permit, you must have it before applying for a building permit.

A development permit does not remove the need for a building permit.

Before applying for a development permit, you can make a free appointment with a planner by using the Development One Stop Shop.

Check the title for your property to see if there are any easements, covenants or encumbrances affecting the property. You must comply with the requirements for each of those features.

Land overlying the Berry Springs Dolostone Aquifer 

This land is currently subject to an Interim Development Control Order (IDCO).

Your plans for using, developing or subdividing land in Berry Springs or a surrounding locality may be affected. 

Read IDCO number 22 on the interim development control order page or contact Development Assessment Services for information.

Other permits and approvals

Depending on the type of building or development you are proposing, you may need other permits and approvals such as:

  • local council permits or approvals
  • stormwater drainage
  • environmental assessments
  • approvals for connections to services like roads, power, water or sewerage.

Discuss your project with a building professional such as a building certifier, builder, architect, designer or engineer. 

For more advice about the permits and approvals you need for your project, contact:

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Last updated: 27 June 2017