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Residential Building Approvals

Servicing Cairns To Townsville, Western QLD To Mt Isa & Torres Strait

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Building Approval advice you can rely on

No matter the size and scope of your project, All Construction Approvals can certify it. Our goal is to provide the highest level of professional service in building regulation and control. We strive to assist our clients in achieving goals and objectives with our team of competent, experienced and quality building certifiers.

We offer innovative, cost effective, quality outcomes throughout the state of Queensland to ensure building compliance and project success.

Our Cairns Building Approval & Certification Services

  • Pool Safety Certificate inspection and issue
  • Private building certification services
  • Assessment of design to the Building Code of Australia requirements
  • Assessment of fire engineered alternative solutions
  • Feasibility, design development and documentation advice
  • Technical and legislative services
  • Regulatory building inspections during construction
  • Liaison and negotiation with regulatory authorities

Frequently Asked Questions

I’m doing some alterations / extensions at home; do I need a Building Plan approval?

Any structural building work including – carports, pergolas, decks, verandas, alterations / extensions, garden sheds and retaining walls higher than 1m require a Building Approval.

When don’t I need a building approval for a Retaining wall?

(Building Regulation 2006 Schedule 1 & Building Act Section 21)

Building approval is not required, for a retaining wall if:

  1. There is no surcharge loading over the zone of influence for the wall; and
  2. The total height of the wall and of the fill or cut retained by the wall is no more than 1m above the wall’s natural ground surface; and
  3. The wall is no closer than 1.5m to a building or another retaining wall.

Can I build closer than the required boundary setbacks?

A Relaxation Application (Siting Variation) will be required for any building work that is located within boundary setbacks that are nominated by law under Building Regulation 2006 and Local Planning Schemes. All Construction Approvals, upon initial assessment of your plans will inform you if a Relaxation (Siting Variation) will be required.

What distance from my front boundary alignment do I have to come back to build a structure?

Generally, a ‘minimum front boundary clearance’ of 6m is required, but a reduced distance may be allowed in special circumstances such as open carports or when the local authority has stipulated special boundary setbacks.

I would like to build a carport on the side of my house. How close to the boundary can I build?

You can build up to the boundary under certain conditions:

  • The carport must be open on two sides and without doors or gates on these sides.
  • In addition, at least one-third of the carport perimeter must be open.
  • It must have an adequate roof-water drainage system.
  • It must not be higher than 4.5m above natural ground level with an average height not more than 3.5m. (Natural ground level is the surface level at the time of registration of the title deed.)
  • Maximum length along the boundary must not be more than 9m – (total length of all buildings or parts on that boundary)
  • It must not be closer than 1.5m to a required window of a neighbouring building.

I wish to raise and build-in underneath my house. What should I be aware of?

The minimum side boundary clearances depend on the height of the building, so raising the building may require a Siting Variation.

For example, a low-set home is generally less than 4.5m high and requires a boundary clearance of 1.5m on Outer Most Projection (fascia) for a standard residential allotment. By raising it to a height between 4.5m and 7.5m, a 2m side boundary clearance is required. Please note: Also, small lots defined by Local Planning Scheme have additional specific siting requirements.

  • A finished ceiling height of 2.4m is required for habitable rooms for example bedrooms, lounge rooms, and living areas, etc.
  • The finished floor level needs to be 225mm above finished ground level.
  • Habitable floor levels need to be 300mm above the Q100 flood inundation overlay.
  • External walls must be water-proof. (Sometimes problems occur where single skin clay masonry is used.)

Do I require Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) Insurance for my project?

QBCC insurance is paid by the builder when undertaking work exceeding a value of $3300. The “Confirmation of Insurance” document needs to be forwarded to your certifier to release plans. The insurance is paid on residential work including unit developments up to a certain number of storeys.

Not sure if your structure needs insurance? Click on the link below:


What is Energy Efficiency?

Energy Efficiency assessments are a legislative requirement with the objective to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by efficiently using energy. These assessments are applicable for new dwellings, class 2 – 9 buildings and alterations/additions (habitable areas) to existing dwellings. When the plans have been assessed for Energy Efficiency, a report is produced with an Energy Efficiency Rating. This report will become part of the Approved Plan documentation.

How long does a building approval last?

The building work must be completed, inspected and finalised within two years of the date issue on the Decision Notice document, unless noted otherwise. (Demolitions to be commenced within 2 months and to be completed within 6 months from date of approval).

Can I come to your office and speak to a Certifier?

Yes. All Construction Approvals offers an In-house Advisory Service to help you with any questions you may have. No appointment necessary, just contact our office at any time to make sure a certifier is available (a fee is applicable for this service).

Can I change my plans after they have been approved?

Yes, you can alter your Approved Plans; however, it will depend on the nature of the alteration. Amending plans requires a request to change to be completed and returned to All Construction Approvals.

A copy of the request to change form can be downloaded from this website and an additional fee for Amending Plans will be applicable (a fee is applicable for this service).

Can you provide me with a quote?

Yes. Simply contact our office on (07) 4054 4588, email your plans to info@acapprovals.com.au or post your plans to PO Box 331, Edmonton, QLD 4860 and we will reply to your request in approximately 2-3 working days. (Subject to work load constraints)

Do I require any inspections during the construction of my building project?

Yes, your Decision Notice attached to your Approved Plans, will advise of what inspections are required. The builder and or owner builder must contact All Construction Approvals (07 4054 4588) before 2pm the day prior to the inspection to ensure the booking is made in sufficient time for the inspection to be carried out on the requested day.

What is Qleave? www.qleave.qld.gov.au

The Building and Construction Industry Portable Long Service Leave Levy, Building and Construction Industry Training Fund Training Levy and Workplace Health and Safety Fee are payable on the total cost of all building and construction work in Queensland costing $150,000 or more.

The levies and fee are usually paid by the project owner and must be paid prior to receiving a development permit. If a development permit is not given, they must be paid prior to the start of work.

The combined levies and fee are calculated at 0.525% of the total cost of work and can be paid at any Australia Post office or agency, or directly to Qleave.


Thank you All Construction Approvals. Great service organising and coordinating and inspecting my project. You made it so easy. Would highly recommend all your helpful staff.

Suzan Quigg

Helpful when I needed guidance with my carport project and super quick when it came to approve it. Their fees also favourable, compared to competition. Very satisfied.

Joao Filipe Castro Santos

I have worked with ACApprovals professionally on a number of building projects for close to 10 years. ACA have always provided competitive fees, prompt/fair assessments, delivered information clearly to the design and construction team for smooth delivery of projects.

Paul Malone

The team a ACA are always helpful. no question is silly and the advice given is honest and accurate regardless of if its retrospective works or for the future. If you are not sure on the requirements pick up your phone and talk to a friendly building certifier.

Mark Leitner

All Construction Approvals provided excellent service following up on the paperwork and inspecting the building to confirm the renovation was completed in accordance with the Cairns Council's standards. Thanks Kim, Ethan and the ACA team.

Steve Willis

Every process runs smoothly and is dealt with in a highly professional manner. Even quick advice over the phone never seems to be too much of a hassle and is highly appreciated!

TinaCardinal Roofing and Sheds

I would not go to anyone else for the professional high level of service you firm provides. Your staff are highly efficient and knowledgeable and go out of their way to provide excellent service. Well done to all of you and don't change anything it all works well.

Terry PlosPlos Constructions Pty Ltd

About All Construction Approvals

All Construction Approvals (ACA) is a privately owned company formed in 2001 by Harald Weber. ACA was created in response to market demand for a personalised, reliable and consistent service in relation to building certification and consultancy work.

Our goal is to provide the highest level of professional service in building regulation and control. We offer innovative, cost effective, quality outcomes to ensure building compliance and project success.

Enquire Now

Call 07 4054 4588