Do I need a building permit?

There are different categories of approval that building work in Tasmania can be divided into, depending on the level of risk with the work, and the risk categories tell us what form and level of building approval is required.

A summary of the categories is as follows:

  • Category 1 – Low risk work that can be undertaken by an owner.     
  • Category 2 – Low risk work that can be undertaken by a licenced builder.
  • Category 3 – Notifiable building work or notifiable demolition work.
  • Category 4 – Building and demolition work that requires a building or demolition permit. 

(The categories of building work are determined by the Director of Building Control.)

Before you do any building or demolition work, it is recommended that you first refer to the Directors Determinations (link below) and consult with a private building surveyor or the Council to discuss any approvals that may be required for your work.

Risk categoriesExamplesApproval processWho can do the work
Low risk workfences
low decks
farm sheds
No permit or approval for performing building work.

May require planning approval
Most work can be
carried out by an
owner. Some larger
projects can be carried out only by a licensed builder without a
building permit
Medium risk work (notifiable work) A detached house or unit that  does not need planning approval
Residential alterations or extensions
An application (Notice of Work) made to a building surveyor, for a Certificate of Likely ComplianceCan be carried out by a licensed builder with regulatory oversight by a building surveyor.
Council will need to be notified that the work is taking place but doesn’t need to give approval.
High risk work (Permit work)Commercial, industrial or public buildings, residential buildings that need a planning permit
Owner builder work
Most works in Hazardous areas
An application to council for a Building PermitWill still need to go through a full building approval process with the council.

Table Source – Consumer Building & Occupational Licencing (Justice Department, 2017)

View the full Director’s Determinations – Categories of Building & Demolition Work.