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To make sure that your building works comply with the Building Regulations and other relevant legislation we carry out inspections of your work as it progresses.
Once you or your builder has decided to start work, you must give us at least two days notice. You do this by completing a notice of commencement and completion of certain stages of work form.
- Fill in the notice of commencement form online.
- Download and fill in a notice of commencement form (pdf, 0.8 MB)(opens new window).
The second part of the total fee is then payable following the first visit to site.
Where applicable, the applicant/owner will be sent an invoice for the inspection fee at this stage. Read the notes on How to pay an inspection fee invoice. (pdf, 29 KB)(opens new window)
There will be no extra fee payable for any further inspections.
When will a building inspector visit?
A building inspector may call on the commencement date, even though there may be nothing to inspect. This will be to introduce himself, briefly discuss the job and answer any questions.
What questions will the building inspector ask?
If the job is being done on a building notice, the building inspector will ask:
- how the work is to be constructed
- the types and sizes of materials.
This will give us basic information in the absence of detailed plans. This doesn't mean that details cannot be altered later but it does act as a basis for the design and inspections.
It is in your own interest to agree a specification with your builder and to enter into a formal contract prior to starting work.
Should I start work without Building Regulations approval?
It's in your best interests to delay commencement of works until you have a decision. Any errors discovered in the plans might result in the work on site being pulled down or changed.
The following should not be covered up before being examined by the building inspector:
- damp proof course
- drainage or
Until the plans have been passed, no visits or comments made by the building inspector should be regarded as implying acceptance of the work.
Can I start work following a rejection of an application?
No. You should not proceed with the work until:
- further changes have been submitted and passed and
- a new notice of decision issued.
You may be liable to prosecution and a fine if you do.
At what stages do I need to contact you?
Commencement is the first of up to nine mandatory notices (not all nine are relevant to some jobs). The stages of work where a notice is statutory are listed below:
- Excavation for foundations.
- Foundation constructed, for example, concrete poured.
- Damp proof course laid.
- Oversite ready for concreting (with damp proof membrane laid if appropriate).
- Drains laid and visible for checking layout and construction.
- Drains backfilled and ready for testing for water tightness.
- Occupation (normally only relevant when part of a building is finished, for example, a flat).
- Completion of the whole job.
More than one inspection may be carried out on one visit where appropriate.
Are these the only inspections the building inspector will carry out?
No. Some jobs will need extra inspections such as:
- reinforcement of concrete structures and
- fire protection to the structure.
As well as these inspections your building inspector may call at other times to check on the work in progress.
How much notice do I need to give for an inspection?
You must give us 24 hours notice of your request for an inspection.
Can I ask for a specific inspection time?
No. This is due to the unpredictable nature of our work. However, we are able to contact you approximately one hour before our visit to you.
When should the completion inspection be carried out?
Before your business relationship with your builder has finished and he has left the site.
Any remedial work required will be your responsibility to complete.
If you're selling your house, this may also delay the sale. If the completion inspection has not been carried out it will be declared as an outstanding matter on any legal search carried out by your purchasers' solicitors.
Pages in the section
Building Regulations and Standards Brunel House, 2nd floor, Brunel Wing Bristol City Council, PO Box 3176 Bristol, BS3 9FS Opening Hours
We operate 'appointment only' visits to this office. Please telephone 0117 922 3000 to book an appointment.
If you have queries about a specific application, please telephone before 10.30am.
St George's Road
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Work: 0117 922 3000