Planning and Building

What is the difference between a Planning Permit and a Building Permit?

The Planning Permit and Building Permit systems operate under different legislation (The Planning & Environment Act 1987, and The Building Act 1993) and are two very different processes.

Generally, planning is concerned with the land - the way it will be used and/or developed, whereas building is concerned with the actual construction - its quality and its safety.

Planning Permits are the approval of "what" you wish to do and "where" you want to do it. They give approval for the use and/or development of land for a specific proposal.

  • Planning Permits are issued by local Councils.
  • Planning Permits ensure the development complies with local and State Government regulations.
  • Planning Permits give authorisation for a use or development on a particular piece of land.

Building Permits authorise the construction or alteration of a building/s, focusing on its structural safety and amenity.

  • Building Permits are issued by local Councils or a private building surveyor.
  • Building Permits approve and allow building projects to proceed.
  • Building Permits ensure the building regulations are followed.
  • Building Permits ensure key structural stages of the project are independently inspected.

When both a Planning Permit and a Building Permit are required for a proposal, then the Planning Permit must be approved and issued before the Building Permit can be. The Building Permit must be consistent with the Planning Permit.

Last updated: 23 January 2018