Second-hand Relocated Dwellings

Question: What is the difference between the requirements for second-hand relocated dwellings under the Building Act and those under the District Plan rules?

Concerning second-hand relocated buildings, confusion often exists between the requirements related to Building Act and those related the District Plan rules. Over and above the usual building regulations that apply to all buildings/dwellings under the Building Act (administered by Council’s Building team) there are additional requirements under the District Plan (administered by Council’s Monitoring Team) for second-hand relocated dwellings.

  • On the one hand, the Building Act regulates aspects such as the structure of the building, fire safety, site preparation, ventilation, sanitation and the like. It is the primary legislation governing the building industry with the purpose of people being able to use buildings safely and without endangering their health.

The Building Code is secondary legislation and sits below the Building Act. It outlines the minimum requirements for buildings to achieve. The Building Code includes performance criteria. A code compliance certificate is a formal statement issued under section 95 of the Building Act 2004, that building work carried out under a building consent complies with that building consent.

  • One the other hand, District Plan rules 13.10.10 (residential zone) and 13.10.10 (rural zone) require that a relocated building complies with the Standards for Permitted Activities in the District Plan and that:

d) All work required to reinstate the exterior of any relocated building, including the siting of the building on permanent foundations, shall be completed within 12 months of the building being delivered to the site.

At the time customers apply for a building consent to relocate a dwelling on a site, one of the forms to be completed is the ‘Confirmation from Dwelling Relocation Applicant’ which is a signed declaration to Council that the external repair / reinstatement work will be completed within 12 months of the relocated building having been delivered to the site. The reason for the requirement of a second-hand dwelling to comply with the exterior reinstatement requirement under the District Plan rules, is that second-hand dwellings arrive on sites in varying states of disrepair and this rule aims to ensure external repair works achieve a tidy and workmanlike external appearance within a reasonable period of time, so that it does not impact negatively on the amenity value of the surrounding residential / rural area.

The Monitoring Team will send out reminder letters / e-mails approximately one year from the siting date of the dwelling to advise the owners that an inspection is due to be undertaken by our Monitoring Officer, in order to ensure compliance with the above District Plan rule. An inspection fee is charged for this inspection. (see Fees and Charges).

During the site visit the Monitoring Officer will take note of the state of the exterior paintwork, decking, baseboards, architraves and roofing etc, to determine if it looks neat and tidy. This does not include the structural nature of these aspects of the dwelling, as that would be regulated under the Building Act. Once the compliance visit has been completed, the owner will receive a letter / e-mail explaining the findings of the Monitoring Officer and whether the exterior reinstatement of the dwelling complies with the District Plan rules or whether remedial work and a possible further compliance inspection will be required.

So, simply put, the Monitoring Team must ensure that the exterior of the dwelling is completed in a neat and tidy manner within a set timeframe. All other aspects of the relocated dwelling fall under the Building Act and is handled by the Building Team.