Do you need a warrant
If you're a homeowner and planning an extension, alterations or conversion, you may need a building warrant as well as planning permission. Whereas planning permission is about how a building fits into the surroundings and impacts on neighbours, building regulations make sure your home is structurally safe and energy efficient. Obtaining a building warrant from your local authority building standards verifier and having it inspect the construction work to an agreed plan in order that it can accept a completion certificate helps ensure guarantees that the work is safe and up to building regulations standard as well as protecting you against rogue builders. So seek advice before starting any building project.
This short informative video provides some good advice when your project includes altering or extending your home.
Your responsibilities as a homeowner MUST complement the verifier role and is explained here. Building standards surveyors are not required to supervise or monitor every activity on a building project nor can they be present at all times. The supervision of building work is the responsibility of the homeowner who should appoint a building professional to supervise the work to ensure the standard of workmanship is satisfactory and meets the building regulations. The purpose of the building standards system is to protect the public interest. It is not intended to provide protection to a client in a contract with a builder. The system, therefore, does not so much control building as set out the essential standards to be met when building work or a conversion takes place, and only to the extent necessary to meet the building regulations.
Starting a building project
Read useful tips and advice for homeowners when starting a building project Certification Certification of design elements for structure and energy and certification of construction for electrical and heating and plumbing installations is available to you.
Some building work does not need to meet the Building Regulations and does not need a warrant - for further info refer to following Building Standards pages on Scottish Government site - Regulation 3 Schedule 1 and Regulation 5 Schedule 3.
- For guidance on the installation of domestic boilers refer to Guidance on Combustion Appliances and associated work which does not require a warrant.
- For guidance on the installation of plumbing fittings refer to Guidance on Plumbing Installations and associated work which does not require a warrant.
- For guidance on the installation of electrical fixtures and wiring refer to Guidance on Electrical Installations not requiring a warrant.
Check with your local authority building standards service to ensure the work you propose does not require a warrant. here is an example of the type of information held by our Local Authority Building Standards Service providers - Homeholder's Guide.
General Guidance and FAQs
- Advice from the Government (BSD) on the building standards system.
- Specific guidance on Conservatories - see Conservatories 2nd Edition - Version 2.1
- Advice from other sources is also available. As an example refer to the RICS Publication - Consumer Guide - Home Extensions Working with your Local Authority
- The Scottish local authority building standards verifiers work with property owners, developers, architects, contractors and trades people to ensure building work meets the standards set in the Building Regulations. the verifier will also assist with how to make an application for a building warrant and give advice on the supporting information you will need to gain approval to your project.
Performance of the verifiers is monitored by LABSS and the BSD through a Key Performance Framework that incorporates a balanced scorecard approach with Key Performance Outcomes.