Building regulations inspection
The Building Regulations require that a project's compliance is independently verified. Historically, this verification could only be given by local authorities, however, it can now also be provided by a privately appointed approved inspector. Building regulations approvals can also be sought either from the building control department of the local authority or from an approved inspector.
Inspections may be required for up to nine stages, however, they are not all relevant to all projects. These stages are:
- Excavations, before filling.
- Foundations before covering up.
- Damp proof course laid.
- New drains before covering up.
- Ground beams and steelwork.
- Roof construction.
Generally, on larger, new-build projects, a 'full plans' application will be made, meaning that full details of the proposed building works are submitted for approval before the works are carried out. Full plans approvals are subject to inspection during the course of the works at stages decided by the local authority (typically during the construction of foundations, damp proof courses and drains, and perhaps other key stages), but as long as the work is carried out in accordance with the approved design, the risk of problems is very much reduced.
Very small projects can obtain building regulations approval purely by inspection. This is a building notice application rather than a full plans application. This can also apply when changes are made to an existing building. This does leave the client at risk that completed works might not be approved, resulting in remedial costs.
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