Planning and Building Requirements

Building regulations are a set of legal requirements for the design and construction of new buildings, extensions and material alterations to and certain changes of use of existing buildings. Building regulations provide for, in relation to buildings, the health, safety and welfare of people, conservation of fuel and energy, and access for people with disabilities.

How are the Regulations framed?

The Regulations comprise a set of legal requirements, expressed in functional statements. These address the following matters: (links to external documents below are hosted on the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government website)

Part AStructure
Part BFire Safety
Part CSite Preparation & Resistance to Moisture
Part DMaterials & Workmanship
Part ESound
Part FVentilation
Part GHygiene
Part HDrainage & Wastewater Disposal
Part JHeat Producing Appliances
Part KStairways, Ladders, Ramps, Guards
Part LConservation of Fuel & Energy
Part MAccess and Use


How do they affect me?

If you are having construction work carried out, the work must comply with Regulations. The Regulations do not apply to works consisting of repairs or renewal (as defined in the Regulations).

What if I fail to comply?

The primary responsibility for compliance rests with designers, builders and building owners.

Building Control Authorities have powers to inspect design documents and buildings, as well as powers of enforcement and prosecution where breaches of the Regulations occur.

There are heavy penalties, including fines and imprisonment, for breaches of the Regulations.

What control arrangements are in place?

Two important control arrangements are provided:

Commencement Notice

Fire Safety Certificate

What is a Commencement Notice?

  • A commencement notice is a notification to a Building Control Authority that a person intends to carry out either works or a material change of use to which the Building Regulations apply.
  • The notice must be given to the Authority not more than 28 days and not less than 14 days before commencement of works or a material change of use. Once validated by the building control authority, works must commence on site within 28 days.

 

Commencement notices are required for the following:

  • the erection of a building;
  • material alteration or extension of a building;
  • a material change of use of a building;
  • works in connection with the material alteration (excluding minor works) of a shop, office or industrial building.

 

What is a Fire Safety Certificate?

A certificate granted by a Building Control Authority certifies that the building or works, if constructed in accordance with the plans, documents and information submitted to the Authority, would comply with the requirements of Part B of the Second Schedule to the Building Regulations. It shows that adequate escape facilities are present in a building and limits the spread of a fire.

Do I need a Fire Safety Certificate?

With the exception of houses and certain agricultural buildings, a Fire Safety Certificate is required for all new buildings (including apartments and flats), as well as material changes of use and certain alterations and extensions to buildings. A Fire Safety Certificate must be obtained before work starts.

How do I apply for a Commencement Notice or Fire Safety Certificate?

Under the amended Regulations 2014, Commencement Notices can be applied for electronically through the Building Control and Management System. The fee for a Commencement Notice is €30 per building involved.

Presently, Fire Safety Certificates can still be applied for through local Government and currently cost €125 or €2.90 per square metre, whichever is greater.

Contact Details

Building Control Management System - Contact Us form

County Council links

Further Information

Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government- Building Regulations

Building Control Management System (BCMS)

S.I No. 9 of 2014 Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014

Information on a 7 day notice

The above is for informational purposes only, please contact the Building Control Management System or local authority for further information.