Discussion Paper: Integrity of private building surveyors and their role in enforcement - a response to the Building Confidence Report

Closed 27 Apr 2021

Opened 2 Mar 2021

Feedback updated 21 Dec 2021

We asked

We sought your views on options to improve integrity in the building approvals process and strengthen a building surveyor’s role in enforcement when they are undertaking a statutory function.

You said

We received 53 responses. There was general support for the majority of proposals which aimed to address the matters described in the Building Confidence Report (BCR). These included matters such as:

  • Documenting the appointment and termination of a building surveyor
  • Ensuring key information is provided to relevant parties
  • Having necessary conflict of interest controls, and
  • Having appropriate enforcement powers for building surveyors.

We did

The BCR Implementation Team used your feedback to inform a model guide on Building surveyor integrity and their role in enforcement.

The model guide was endorsed by Building Ministers and is available for state and territory consideration and implementation.

Published responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


In 2017, Building Minsters authorised an assessment of the effectiveness of compliance and enforcement systems for the building and construction industry across Australia. The resulting Building Confidence Report (BCR) made 24 recommendations for a best practice model for compliance and enforcement, to strengthen the effective implementation of the National Construction Code (NCC).

To varying degrees, all jurisdictions rely on private building surveyors as part of their building approvals process. During this process commercial relationships inevitably form between private building surveyors and those seeking their services.

BCR recommendations 9 and 11 relate specifically private building surveyors. The objectives of these recommendations are to:

  • mitigate conflicts of interest;
  • increase transparency in engagement and statutory responsibilities; and
  • provide enhanced supervisory powers and require mandatory reporting.

Meeting these objectives will help increase compliance with the NCC, state and territory legislation and NCC referenced documents.

To fulfil these recommendations, the BCR identifies 11 minimum necessary statutory controls and supporting measures required in each jurisdiction's building approval process. For the purposes of developing benchmarked minimum model guidance, as requested by Building Ministers, these have been defined as 10 principles. It is expected that state and territory governments will have regard to these principles, and the corresponding model guidance, when reforming their legislation

The BCR Implementation Team has developed a discussion paper to facilitate input into the content of the model guidance that will underpin each principle.

Why your views matter

Feedback on the proposed model guidance for BCR recommendations 9 and 11 will improve the rigour of the work by capturing the views of regulators, industry and the public.

The full discussion paper can be accessed below or downloaded from the bottom of this page. 

Your browser does not support inline PDF viewing.Please download the PDF.

Providing a response

Responses to questions in the discussion paper are open until 11:59PM AEST Monday 26 April 2021. Only responses submitted using the online form will be considered.

Thank you for your feedback.

What happens next

The BCR Implementation Team will consider the responses received from stakeholders. These responses will help refine and enhance the model guidance and help identify any further work required. 

Once the model guidance is finalised, it will be presented to the Board of the ABCB for its review and then to Building Ministers for consideration.


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