Product substitution

About this document

  • Published on 6 December 2021
  • ISBN: 978-1-99-102216-5 (Online)


Guidance for designers, contractors and building owners who are considering building products different from those originally requested and specified.


There are a number of reasons you might consider substituting a building product. These include price, lack of availability, or pressure from the building owner to use an alternative.

If you are considering product substitutions to mitigate the impact of shipping delays and other
disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, then this guide may also be of use to you.

Your rationale for wanting to substitute a product may be valid but when the product is part of a building system it can often have much wider implications.

Related guidance

Product substitution poster [PDF 860 KB]

Product substitution – plasterboard


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: