Many of you may have already heard of the new Building Regulation which came into force on March 1st 2014. The Building Control Amendment Regulation (BCAR) require property owners, builders, and registered construction professionals to show that the construction works have been designed and built in accordance with current Building Regulations.
So when does BCAR apply?
Building Control Regulations apply generally to new buildings and to existing buildings which undergo an ‘extension’, a ‘material alteration’ or a ‘material change of use’.
The terms extension and change of use is easily understood but ‘material alteration’ needs to be define. The definition of a ‘material alternation’ is define as ‘where the work or part of the work carried out by itself would be the subject of a requirement of Part A (Structure), B (Fire Safety) or M (Access and Use) of the Second Schedule to the Building Regulations 1997.
What are the main features of BCAR?
In short the new Building Regulations introduce three new mandatory certificates,
- Design Certificate
- Assigned Certifier
- Completion Certificate
The Design Certifier
Prior to the works commencing, the design of the works must be certified by the “Design Certifier”. The Design Certifier must be a chartered engineer, registered architect or building surveyor. The Design Certificate’s responsibility is to confirm that the design is in accordance with Building Regulations.
The Assigned Certifier
It is the responsibility of the building owner to appoint an Assigned Certifier. Like the Design Cerifier the Assigned Cerifier must be a chartered engineer, registered architect or building surveyor. It is the responsibility of the Assigned Certifier to monitor and inspect the works on a regular basis to ensure the building works are compliant with Building Regulations.
The Completion Certificate
At the end of the project, the builder must certify that, having exercised reasonable skill, care and diligence, the works as completed have been constructed as per the design drawings and specifications submitted, and that the works are compliant with Building Regulations.