Updated guidance for remediation work in flood damaged buildings

Posted: 8 December 2023

Plasterboard flooding
Updated guidance has been released to assist with navigating remediation and recovery work in flood damaged buildings.

Aotearoa/New Zealand is prone to natural disasters and has recently experienced weather events that have resulted in flooding and damage to buildings. 

To help with the remedial work that is required after such events, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has updated its guidance on discretionary exemptions, and on repairing and replacing plasterboard in flood damaged buildings.

Discretionary exemptions for flood damaged buildings guidance

Under the Building Act 2004, Building Consent Authorities (BCAs), Territorial Authorities (TAs) and Regional Authorities (RAs) can use their discretion to allow proposed building work to be carried out without the need to apply for building consent, provided certain criteria are met. 

The guidance provides a consistent starting point for BCAs, TAs, and RAs when considering how to plan for and apply their discretion (known as a discretionary exemption), in relation to flood damaged buildings.

It also includes things that BCAs, TAs and RAs should consider, such as developing a clear policy on discretionary exemptions and offers specific insights into handling flood damaged houses.

Repair and replacement of plasterboard due to flooding guidance

This guidance provides information for homeowners, building practitioners and council staff on repairing and replacing damaged plasterboard due to flooding.

The guidance includes:

  • why damaged plasterboard linings should be replaced
  • how to approach the work
  • the different types and purposes of plasterboard
  • building work that is exempt from needing a building consent.

Accessing the guidance

You can read more information, and access quick guides the Building Performance website:

Applying discretionary exemptions for flood damaged buildings 

Repair and replacement of plasterboard due to flooding

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This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: