About this checklist
A building contractor is required to provide you with this checklist and other prescribed information under the Building Act 2004
before you sign a contract for the building work if -
(a) you request this checklist and the prescribed disclosure information; or
(b) the building work is going to cost $30,000 or more (including GST).
The building contractor is the person or company you have asked to do building work for you.
The building contractor may not be an actual builder. The building contractor could be a plumber, an electrician, or any other
tradesperson who is doing some building work for you and whom you are dealing with directly.
(See notes below)
(Tick when completed)
Agree on project structure and management
Hire competent building contractors
Agree on price and payments
Have a written contract
Step 1 – Become informed
All building work must comply with the provisions of the Building Act 2004. You can find a copy of the Building Act 2004 on the
New Zealand Legislation website:
Building work is any work done in relation to the construction or alteration of a building. This includes any work done on your home
or other structure, such as a garage, retaining walls, and fences. It also includes work like painting, decorating, and landscaping if
it is part of the construction or alteration of a building.
However, if the only work you are getting done is redecorating and there is no construction or alteration work involved, it is not
building work. If landscaping work does not include any structures (eg, pergolas or retaining walls), it is also not building work.
All building work requires a building consent unless it is exempt under the Building Act 2004.
Generally, only simple or low-risk work is exempt from the requirement to have a building consent. Certain gas and electrical work
is also exempt. For more information, go to
Building work that is significant or of higher risk (such as structural alterations) requires a building consent and must be carried out
or supervised by a licensed building practitioner. For more information on these requirements, go to
Step 2 – Agree on project structure and management
Building projects do not run themselves. Decide how you want to manage the building project.
A few different roles are needed on a building project. You need someone to -
manage timelines and costs:
liaise with the local council:
make decisions about the design of the work.
You can do some of this yourself, but if you are not knowledgeable about the building work process, you should get help from
an architect, an independent project manager, a building company, or a licensed building practitioner who is licensed to co-ordinate
the building work involved.
You should be really clear about the scope and size of the project and get detailed plans up front.
Be clear with your building contractor about who is doing the building work and who is responsible for making design and change
decisions during the project.