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Compliance schedules

Last updated: 21 March 2016

Buildings containing certain safety and essential systems, known as specified systems, are issued with a compliance schedule and regular inspections (not including buildings used wholly or partly as a single household unit).

Building owners must ensure continued operation of certain specified systems, meet inspection requirements and sign an annual building warrant of fitness. The building owner must ensure continued effective operation of those features and systems, meet inspection requirements and sign an annual building warrant of fitness.

All buildings, other than single residential buildings, require a compliance schedule and annual warrant of fitness if they contain any of the following:

  1. automatic systems for fire suppression (for example, sprinkler systems)
  2. automatic or manual emergency warning systems for fire or other dangers
  3. electromagnetic or automatic doors or windows (for example, ones that close on fire alarm activation)
  4. emergency lighting systems
  5. escape route pressurisation systems
  6. riser mains for use by fire services
  7. automatic backflow preventers connected to a potable water supply
  8. lifts, escalators, travelators or other systems for moving people or goods within buildings
  9. mechanical ventilation or air-conditioning systems
  10. building maintenance units providing access to exterior and interior walls of buildings
  11. laboratory fume cupboards
  12. audio loops or other assistive listening systems
  13. smoke control systems
  14. emergency power systems for, or signs relating to, a system or feature specified for any of the above systems or features
  15. any or all of the following features, so long as:
  • they form part of a building’s means of escape from fire
  • those means also contain any or all of the systems or features specified in clauses 1-6, 9 and 13

The features are:

15(a) systems for communicating spoken information intended to help evacuation

15(b) final exits (as defined by clause A2 of the building code)

15(c) fire separations (as so defined)

15(d) signs for communicating information intended to facilitate evacuation

15(e) smoke separations (as so defined).

All buildings that have a cable car, including single residential buildings, require a compliance schedule. However a single residential building does not require a compliance schedule for any of the other features listed above.

Role of councils

A council issues a compliance schedule in its capacity as a building consent authority.

Councils have a range of other building-related responsibilities, including monitoring the compliance schedule and building warrant of fitness regime. They can charge a fee for their services.

Compliance schedule content

The compliance schedule lists the building’s specified systems and the inspection, maintenance and reporting procedures needed to keep them in good order.

Applications for a building consent need to contain compliance schedule information for:

  • a new building with any specified systems
  • building work in an existing building that includes modifying or adding to the specified systems - this requires an amendment to an existing compliance schedule

The council requires details of the design features of the specified systems and the proposed procedures for inspection, maintenance and reporting to be included in the compliance schedule.

Independent qualified person

An independent qualified person (IQP) is a person or firm approved by the council as qualified to inspect certain compliance schedule items and ensure that the necessary maintenance occurs. ‘Independent’ means that the person has no financial interest in the building.

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: