Information Note on Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (SI No. 9 of 2014) and the Self-Build Sector
S.I. No. 9 of 2014 does not prevent self-build or use of direct labour or any person building on their own land.
The twin aims of the new regulations can be summarised as being:
To make owners, designers and builders accountable for compliance with their statutory obligations under the Building Control Act 1990 to design and construct in accordance with the requirements of the Building Regulations, and
To empower competence and professionalism on site.
Self-build arrangements are entirely compatible with these aims.
The statutory obligations that rest with the owner and builder (one and the same person in a self-build scenario) are not new – they already apply under the Building Control Act 1990.
From a self-build perspective, SI No.9 of 2014 will work as follows:
The owner will, as before, assume responsibility as builder for ensuring that the building or works concerned will comply with the requirements of the second schedule to the building regulations. They must also satisfy themselves that any one they employ or engage to undertake part of the works is competent to do those works.
At commencement, they will notify the local authority that they themselves are the builder and sign the builder’s undertaking required for building control purposes.
At commencement a Self-Builder must also assign a competent, registered construction professional (i.e. architect, building surveyor or chartered engineer)
to certify the design, and
to inspect the works and certify the completed dwelling (the assigned certifier).
The design certifier and the assigned certifier may be one and the same person. This person will be the point of contact with the building control authority for lodgment of compliance documentation and certificates, etc. The fee for these professional services will add a modest amount to the cost of the dwelling but will ensure that a quality construction is achieved and obviate the need for costly repairs and remediation works where things go wrong.
At completion the Self-Builder and the Assigned Certifier will both certify the building in line with their responsibilities.
The Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government has this week written to the Irish Association of Self-Builders offering a meeting to address their concerns and to ensure that the Self-Build Sector can continue to play its part within the ongoing development of the building control system.
Architecture /Building Standards
Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government