Building applications and permits

Building permits

Under Western Australian legislation a building permit is required before commencing most building work.

Formal approval (a building permit) is required for any building work involving the development of new structures, alterations or extensions and changes in ground levels. these include:

  • fences
  • swimming pools, spas and barriers
  • garden sheds
  • verandahs
  • gazebos
  • garages
  • workshops
  • pergolas
  • dwellings
  • commercial buildings including fitouts and refurbishments
  • industrial buildings
  • changes to levels (i.e. cut and/or fill)
  • retaining walls.

The Building Regulations 2012 details some building work for which a building permit is not required.  See the related documents below for types of work for which a building permit is not required.

If the total value of the work exceeds $20,000 a permit is issued to a registered builder, or in some circumstances, an owner builder.

The building permit issued for the particular work is void if the work is not commenced within the first 12 months of the date of issue, and the work must be completed within 24 months of the permit being issued.

It is important to ensure sufficient time for assessment. No work is to start without the building permit.

Visit the Building Commission website to access all the building permit application forms you need to submit to us. We are happy to discuss your project before you commence the process so you are clear on what you need to do. Please call us on 9528 0333 with any enquiries.

Online building permit applications

Do you want to apply for a building permit online?

You can use our online portal, Rock Port, to lodge your application. First time users will need to create a new account for the online lodgement of a building application. Existing users can log in with their existing Rock Port account. You will need to have your completed Application for Building Permit Form ready, available from the Building Commission website.

Submit a building application


Town Planning consent

Development of commercial and industrial lots, or for three or more grouped dwellings, requires assessment and approval of a development application by us prior to applying for a building permit. A change of use of a commercial tenancy may also be required; please check with our Planning Services.

Town Planning consent is also required for any development on all Special Residential and Special Rural zoned land, including where a building envelope variation is sought.

If you are unsure if Town Planning consent is required for your application, please contact us on 9528 0333.

Copies of building plans

We will, where possible, provide copies of approved building plans on request to building owners.

The City will accept requests from:

  • the person shown on the City's records as being the owner
  • a person who is authorised in writing by the owner.

For security reasons, the City may require proof of identity.  Please download and complete the application form to request building plans.

Completed forms may be submitted in person at the City's offices, by email to or via post.

Please note all requests can take up to five working days to process.

Conditions when requesting copies of building plans

  • If you are not the owner of the property, please be advised that the owner's authorisation (signature) is required for the release of the plans
  • Some older plans may not be available
  • If the building forms part of a strata, duplex or any non-green title lot etc., consent from the strata corporate body or individual owners may be required
  • The City will provide the plans to the best of our ability, however, we cannot guarantee the quality of the print as the original plans may be subject to fair wear and tear, blurred print etc.
  • Incomplete application forms will be returned
  • Full payment is required prior to the copies of building plans being issued.

How much does it cost?

A non-refundable application fee for a full set of plans is payable. You can pay in person, by credit card over the phone, or send in a cheque or money order. The standard fee for a full set of residential plans is $60 and a full set of commercial plans is $100, however, for properties that have plans greater than A3 size, additional fees will be charged. These fees include GST and are subject to change.

General building enquiries

For general building enquiries please call us on 9528 0333.

Additional forms

Your application may also require some of these forms, although we will let you know if you need to complete one, once you have contacted us.

Go to Top of the page