Change of Use

A change of use is required when the purpose of a building, or part of a building, changes from one use to another – as defined in the Building (Specified Systems, Change the Use, and Earthquake-prone Buildings) Regulations 2005 – and the new use has additional Building Code requirements than the old use. For example, an industrial business converting to a shop or restaurant, or adding living and sleeping facilities into a building that didn’t previously have any.

If you want to change the use of a building, or part of a building, you must inform the Council and we must confirm whether the use may be changed.

How to Apply

You must receive written confirmation from the Council before you make the proposed change.

The requirements will vary and we need to be satisfied that the building’s new use will comply with the Building Code as near as reasonably practicable. For example, the building will have to comply with all requirements around accessibility and escape for fire. Often a building consent will be required if any work is needed as a result of the change.

If you make the change without advising the Council you could be liable for a fine of up to $5,000.

Take a look at the MBIE site for more information about a change of use.

Last reviewed date: 02 Aug 2023