Applying for a Building Permit

  • Anyone can apply for a building permit, the owner, builder, designer, building surveyor or any other person.
  • The applicant provides details of the person responsible for the work, ie the builder, in the application form.
  • The builder takes responsibility for ensuring the construction complies with the applicable building standards and the provisions in the building permit.
  • An application can be made for a building or one or more stages of a building.
  • There are two types of building permit applications, “Certified” and “Uncertified”.


certified application must be accompanied by a signed Certificate of Design Compliance and can be made for any class of building and incidental structure.

Applications for Class 1b and Class 2 to Class 9 buildings must be made as Certified applications whereas this is optional for Class 1a and 10 buildings and incidental structures.

An independent building surveyor is appointed by the applicant to check the proposal and provide a Certificate of Design Compliance for lodgement with the permit authority along with other relevant documentation.

The permit authority has 10 business days to decide on a Certified application.


An Uncertified application is submitted to the permit authority without a Certificate of Design Compliance and can only be made for Class 1a and Class 10 buildings and incidental structures.

The permit authority has 25 business days to decide on an uncertified application. 


  • a Certificate of Design Compliance (BA3) only when applying for a Certified applications;
  • copies of all relevant plans and specifications;
  • evidence of the following authorities under written law as relevant to the building or incidental structure (r.18) —
  • if the building work involves the construction or installation of any apparatus for the treatment of sewage as defined in the Health Act 1911 section 3(1), the approval required under section 107(2)(a) or (b) of that Act;
  • if the building work is development as defined in the Planning and Development Act 2005 section 4, each approval required under that Act in relation to the work such as a copy of the planning approval or its reference number; 
  • if the building work involves the construction, alteration or extension of an aquatic facility as defined in the Health (Aquatic Facilities) Regulations 2007 regulation 4, the approval required under Part 2 Division 1 of those regulations;
    • evidence that notification of the name, address and contact number of the applicant for a building permit and the name of the permit authority to which the application is made has been given to the Heritage Council of Western Australia if the place to which the application relates (r. 18(3)(a)) —
  • is subject to a Heritage Agreement made under the Heritage Act section 29;
  • is entered in the Register of Heritage Places established under the Heritage Act section 46;
  • is subject to a Conservation Order under the Heritage Act section 59; or
  • is subject to an Order in Council made under the Heritage Act section
  • appropriate consent forms or court order where work encroaches onto or adversely affects other land;
  • evidence that the required insurance provisions under the Home Building Contracts Act 1991 have been met (where applicable). Click here for further information;
  • payment of the prescribed fee and levy; and
  • evidence of owner-builder approval from the Building Services Board (if applicable).

The approval process will be quicker and more effective if a complete application is submitted to the permit authority. A permit authority must not grant the building permit unless it is satisfied as to each of the matters mentioned in s.20, which includes the information above.

The fees cover the cost of assessment, regardless of the outcome. There is no refund of fees on refusal.


A permit authority may impose, add, vary or revoke conditions on a building permit. Any conditions must relate to the particular building work rather than to work of that kind generally. Importantly those conditions cannot modify the Certificate of Design Compliance or the plans and specifications that are specified in that certificate.

Applicants may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal for a review of the decision of the permit authority in relation to a condition imposed on the grant of a building permit.


During construction some circumstances may arise that require changes or variations to the plans and specifications. Some minor changes may not require any amendment to the plans and specifications. Other changes or variations may require a certificate of design compliance if the changes affect compliance with the building standards. Accordingly a new building permit may be required to reflect those changes. The new building permit may cover the changes only and the previous building permit still covers the other works.

However where there are substantial changes or variations to the design or construction of the building or incidental structure, a new building permit for all the works may be warranted. This ensures that an accurate building record is maintained for that building or incidental structure.


A permit authority may set any validity period for a permit. This is usually done at the request of the applicant. Where the permit authority does not set a validity period, the default is two years. If a project takes longer than expected, an application to extend the permit (BA22) can be submitted to the relevant permit authority.


Consent/Court Order for Encroachments and/or Consent/Court Order for Work Affecting Other Land

If the plans show that part of a building or structure will be placed into, onto or over land beyond the boundaries of the work area; or land beyond the boundaries of the work area will be adversely affected, a consent form or court order must accompany the application. For further information please see 'Work Affecting Other Land' brochure. This should be organised before the application for building permit is filled out and lodged.