The Building Act 2004 allows for some building work to be carried out without obtaining a building consent. We explain how to apply for an exemption from a building consent with the Council.

Important note:

All work must comply with the building code and any other legislation (in particular the district plan) even if a building consent is not required.

Apply for your building consent exemption

Before making an application please refer to information sheet B-391 Guidance on presenting high-quality applications for exemption.

Alternatively, you can download and complete an application for an exemption from building consent (Form B-004) [PDF, 556 KB] 

You can also pick up an application form from any Council service centre, or we can post one to you if you call us on (03) 941 8999.

We encourage you to submit your application using online services. You will need to register to use this service, however, using it minimises Council administration time and can lead to faster processing times. Please note that the B-004 application form is not needed if you complete an online application form as part of your online services submission.

Exemptions from building consent fall into two categories:

Work automatically exempt under the Building Act

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) provides guidance on building work that is automatically exempt(external link)(external link) under the Building Act.

Exemptions considered by Christchurch City Council

The Council considers applications for exemption on a case-by-case basis where the work is:

  • carried out by suitably qualified and experienced persons with a proven record of competence in similar work, and
  • a clear understanding of the Building Act and building code is demonstrated in the application, and
  • assurances are given as to how compliance with the New Zealand Building Code will be achieved.

A team dedicated to exemption applications will carefully consider each application.

For further information on the Council's process refer to information sheet B-390 Building work that does not require a building consent [PDF, 957 KB]


Refer to the Building Consents Fee Schedule for information on exemptions from building consent.

Please note: that fixed fees and minimum application fees do not always cover all of the consent related costs of an application.