Builder’s obligation and Designer’s responsibilities

Builder and designer rights and obligations

Owner responsibilities

Building Act 2004 Section 14B: An owner is responsible for –
Obtaining any necessary:

  • Consents – Building Consent and / or Resource Consent before building starts.
  • Approvals – for amendments to Building Consent documents
  • Certificates – CCC, COA, CPU (as appropriate)

Ensuring that building work carried out by the owner complies

  • with the building consent or,
  • if there is no building consent, with the building code

Ensuring compliance with any notices to fix.

Owner-builder responsibilities

Building Act 2004 Section 14C: An owner-builder is responsible for –
Ensuring that restricted building work is carried out

  • under the owner-builder exemption
  • complies with the building consent and
  • the plans and specifications to which the building consent relates

For more information see Owner-Builder Exemptions.

Designer responsibilities

All designers

Responsibilities of all designers are defined by the Building Act 2004 Section 14D:
In subsection (2), designer means

  • a person who prepares plans and specifications for building work or
  • who gives advice on the compliance of building work with the building code

A designer is responsible for ensuring that the plans and specifications or the advice

  • are sufficient to result in the building work complying with the building code,
  • if the building work were properly completed in accordance with the plans, specifications or advice

Designer Licensed Building Practitioners

Responsibilities of LBPs under Building Act 2004, section 45(3) and section 88

  • If the designer is a Registered Architect or a CPENG Engineer or a Licensed Building Practitioner, it is their responsibility to provide a certificate of work to the building owner and local council when they apply for a BC.
  • If the designer has supervised any RBW construction then when this is finished they must also supply the client with a Record of Work form which the client needs to supply council when they apply for a CCC.
  • Designer LBP’s must be licensed in the design class.
  • They are responsible for designing of primary structures, the weathertight elements, or fire safety systems on residential buildings and these may be classified as “Restricted Building Work” (RBW).
  • They must be competent to carry out this essential work on residential building structures or weathertightness and the RBW of these designs need to comply with the building code.

Registered Architects

Building Act 2004 Section 14D (as above).
Registered Architects must comply with the Registered Architect Rules 2006.

  • Section 7 (2)(p) and section 21(a) RE: Minimum standards: must understand and comply with statutory and regulatory requirements
  • Section 47: Uphold the law: must abide by the professional codes of ethics and conduct
  • Section 49: Show care and due diligence

Chartered Professional Engineers

Building Act 2004 Section 14D (as above).
CPENG engineers must comply with the Chartered Professional Engineers of New Zealand Rules (no 2) 2002 –

  • Section 43: Take reasonable steps to safeguard health and safety of people.
  • The New Zealand Building Code defines the minimum level of health and safety performance that a building design must meet.

Builder responsibilities

Building Act 2004 Section 14E:

In subsection (2), builder means any person who carries out building work, whether trade or not.
A builder is responsible for –

  • ensuring that the building work complies with the building consent and
  • the plans and specifications to which the building consent relates
  • ensuring that building work not covered by a building consent complies with the building code

A licensed building practitioner who carries out or supervises restricted building work is responsible for –

  • ensuring that the restricted building work is carried out or
  • supervised in accordance with the requirements of this Act; and
  • ensuring that he or she is licensed in a class for carrying out or
  • supervising that restricted building work

Starting my own business came across my mind while I was travelling on the train

In 1996, I was an university student at the age of 21years,
I chose the first company where I work just because I was comfortable and gives me the stability, just like any other people around me.
White-collar work, easy sales without having to bring new sales.
The stability of the industry and that the company being the large corporate was a peace of mind.

I joined the company without any hesitation believing that is the right decision.
I ignored my heart and chose only by the conditions before me.

After that, everything went fine.
The results at work, relationship with the boss, peers, family, girlfriend and the customers were all going very well.

I did everything I can for our customers. That was fun.
I spent twice as much of the time compared to others at work. I liked it.
However, since it was a business, I often had a lot of time going to eat and drink.

However, I felt quite unease at the company atmosphere.
In particular, all the co-workers were continuously complaining about the company, the boss, the companions, and the customers when they got together.

My belief was try and improve if that is going to make myself happier.
Most of them paid attention on extraneous things such as not to leave work unless the boss left, don’t talk nonsense at the meeting ..

I was surprised that the salary was almost the same for those who did their best and those who did not. Even though the result is by 10 times different, salary changed by only a few percent.
I thought this was also not right.

There was no feeling of discomfort nor complaints to others.
My life was different from others, so I continued to make efforts for the company and my future.


The word that made me happy at those times,

“I want to buy from MICKEY, not from the company.”

When I was told for the first time, I was almost in tears.
I wasn’t expecting it or maybe I was happy that I was told by a professor who is said to be a highly paid teacher.

And the number of customers who said such things was increasing.
However, the “feeling of strangeness” increased with respect to the words, rather than the emotions when they were said for the first time .

This was all thanks to the efforts of the founder who gave me this opportunity.
I was only taking the credit from it. That is not my power. “I don’t like that.” I was starting to notice that.
However, there was myself who did not have the courage to do anything.
Because the company is big, it’s a super stable industry, and so on. .. ..

Meanwhile, among the customers who were supporting me,
I got into trouble and helped them without seeking a reward. As a way of appreciation, they took me for the first overseas trip in my life.

It was only the first day that made me very happy, my heart gradually became empty. The more I was evaluated and kindly treated by others, the more I felt that I was powerless.

I have this wonderful time because of the company.
I felt at unease because I was only here today without any effort.

On the other hand,
unfortunately as a cruel reality, as long as I am in this company, I felt like I couldn’t do “cool things”
such as “taking a young man on an overseas trip on my own” like my customer did for me.

“I want to be the one who can treat others’  feeling became stronger.

Meanwhile, while watching the beautiful sunset of Saipan on the evening bus on the third day of my trip,

“I will start a business”

I swore that.
I remember the music that was playing at that time.
And I quit the company.

After that, I changed my job.
But nothing was satisfying. I felt like I
didn’t understand the meaning of living and said,
“I will do what I want to do and die early.”

Then, I took a peace boat around the earth.
It was a school trip in my life. It was so much fun.
After getting off the ship, I worked for a few months, but it was impossible.
The heart was already dead.

And I don’t know why, but while looking at my favourite Ikebukuro station building in the morning on the Saikyo line train,

” I’ll start a business in a place no one knows me, no money, profession, connections, no words, just from the zero”

I was ready to give my life. I decided to prepare. I was happier with the feeling of being alive than with fear. There was a lot of energy or excitement.

And came to New Zealand by the working holidays but not to rest.

“Going on a trip to change your life”