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Manufactured building solutions

Last updated: 15 March 2016

If you’re using manufactured building solutions in your building work, you will need the manufacturer or supplier to provide clear evidence of how their product meets Building Code requirements, as well as providing assembly and installation instructions.

Manufactured building solutions are building components or buildings made offsite (away from the final building site). They range in size and complexity, and include:

  • smaller components, such as window assemblies
  • complex components, such as whole wall panels, modules and complete buildings.

They can be fully assembled offsite or can require onsite assembly (for example, kit sets or flat packs).

It is the manufacturer’s or supplier’s responsibility to provide clear evidence of compliance, as required by the Building Act. It is also a consumer right that products, which can include manufactured building solutions, be fit for purpose.

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Evidence of complying with the Building Code

You will need to submit evidence of compliance with your building consent application. Your building consent application should include both the onsite building work and any offsite manufacturing.

Manufacturers or suppliers might be able to demonstrate Building Code compliance by:

  • providing good technical evidence about their building components (for example, using a product technical statement)
  • membership of relevant industry schemes (for example, the Window Association of New Zealand, WANZ)
  • independent testing and assessments
  • appraisals
  • product certification. 

Our product assurance toolkit can help you choose the most suitable and cost effective way to show your product meets Building Code requirements.

The council will need to decide, in its capacity as a building consent authority, whether the evidence is sufficient on reasonable grounds. The council will generally consider factors such as the building component’s:

  • size and complexity
  • contribution to critical aspects of building performance (for example, structure or weathertightness)
  • previous use (commonly used or innovative)
  • manufacturer or supplier (established or unknown)
  • factory location (local or offshore).

During construction, the manufacturer may need to visit the site to check all relevant measurements – or they may ask you to provide these measurements. This will enable them to accurately carry out the offsite manufacturing work.

You might need to liaise further with the manufacturer to ensure the manufactured building solution is completed and delivered to the site on time, so it doesn’t delay construction.

Council inspections

Councils carry out inspections during building work so they can be satisfied on reasonable grounds that the building work complies with the consent – this may include visiting the manufacturer to inspect the work carried out offsite.

Council inspections are usually at key stages of building work. For example, these may be before installing wall lining or cladding to check that the insulation and structural framing matches the consent requirements.

Quality assurance

To minimise the need for inspections the manufacturer could provide the council with details of their quality assurance processes, as part of the consent application. The council might take this as additional assurance of Building Code compliance and manufacture to a consistent standard.

Quality assurance process details could include:

  • factory processes
  • manufacturing controls
  • details of any installation or assembly requirements
  • controls to ensure Building Code compliance when incorporated into a particular building project
  • details of any transportation requirements or pre-installation protocols (to minimise the risk of damage in transit or of substandard components being accepted at the building site)
  • any independent or self-certification of the factory.

Completing the installation

The council must approve and document any substitutions or changes made during construction.

Once the installation is complete, the manufacturer needs to give the building owner and the council any further evidence of compliance with the building consent. This might include a statement from the manufacturer or maintenance information. The council will need this for its final sign-off (code compliance certification) of the overall project. The building owner may also need it to protect warranties, by meeting maintenance requirements.

Build to the consent includes information about the building process through to sign-off.

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: