Exempt work, when designed and reviewed by a chartered engineer

Last updated: 4 October 2018

If you engage an engineer to undertake building work involving signs, plinths, retaining walls or playground equipment, you may not require a building consent.

You must engage a chartered professional engineer to undertake and review the building work listed in Part 3 of the Building Act's Schedule 1 in order for the design to be exempt from a building consent.

Your engineer must be registered by Engineering New Zealand. You should verify their registration status before they start work. 

Check the Chartered Professional Engineer register on the Engineering New Zealand website to confirm your engineer is registered.

Part 1 and Part 2 of Schedule 1 also list work that can be done without a building consent.

Building consent exemptions includes building work listed in Part 1 that doesn’t need a building consent and can be done by anyone.

Plumbing and drainage work includes information about work listed in Part 2 that doesn’t need a building consent if it is carried out by an authorised person.

What the exempt work includes

The following guidance is from Part 3 of our guide to Building work that does not require a building consent.

39. Signs
40. Plinths 
41. Retaining walls 
42. Certain public playground equipment
43. Removal of sign, plinth, retaining wall, or public playground equipment

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: