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Building warrants of fitness (BWOF)

What is a building warrant of fitness?

A Building Warrant of Fitness (BWoF) is official written confirmation that the specified systems in a building (listed on a Compliance Schedule) are properly maintained to a high standard and regularly tested to ensure the safety of those who enter the building. It shows that the owner has maintained (or has employed qualified people to maintain) the systems to the required standard during the previous year.

What is a compliance schedule?

A compliance schedule lists the specified systems within a building and the procedures required to keep them in good working order, helping to ensure the building is safe and healthy for people to enter, occupy or work in.

When is a building warrant of fitness required?

Once a compliance schedule and if applicable a compliance schedule statement has been issued usually at the same time as a code compliance certificate.  After 12 months the compliance schedule statement has expired and the owner is then required to make annual returns (provide a Building Warrant of Fitness and Form 12As certificates of compliance).

The buildings covered by BWoFs are usually commercial or industrial buildings or office blocks. However, if your home has or is serviced by a cable car you’ll need a BWoF for it.

Every 12 months, on the anniversary of the day the Compliance Schedule was issued, the building owner must send us:

  • a completed BWoF 
  • a statement (on a Form 12A) from an independent qualified person that the inspection, maintenance and reporting procedures for each specified system have been fully complied with
  • any recommendations for amending the Compliance Schedule, and a completed application form

The Form(s) 12A, along with any other associated BWoF documentation, must be retained for two years. These records must be kept within a BWoF folder onsite (unless agreed upon with Council for an alternative location). 

A copy of the BWoF must be displayed in a public area of the building at all times.

If you don’t have a BWoF when you should have one, you may be prosecuted.

Where can I get a copy of my compliance schedule?

Send the BWOF team an email at BWOF@poriruacity.govt.nz and they can send you the latest one we have on file

Building Audits

Council undertakes an ongoing audit programme of buildings with, and sometimes without, Compliance Schedules in the city. The audit findings may result in a new Compliance Schedule and Compliance Schedule statement been issued or, changes to the existing Compliance Schedule to reflect the specified systems identified as present in a building

Building owner or agent requesting changes to Compliance Schedule

If a building owner or their agent becomes aware that the Compliance Schedule does not reflect the specified systems installed in a building, they can request an amendment to a Compliance Schedule using the Application for Amendment to Compliance Schedule form (Form 11). This should be accompanied by expert opinion such as a fire report to support the proposed change.

Some important requirements taken from the Building Act 2004 include:

  • the building owner must provide the territorial authority with copies of Form 12A certificates from independent qualified persons, including any recommendations they make.
  • the territorial authority  must consider any recommendation to amend a compliance schedule made by an independent qualified persons and where necessary make any changes to the compliance schedule after giving the owner an opportunity to provide comments.
  • the territorial authority  must retain copies of the Form 12A certificates.
  • territorial authorities are required to administer and enforce the building warrant of fitness system and can charge a fee for undertaking a building warrant of fitness processing, inspection/audit.

Check the links below for more information about building warrants of fitness and compliance schedules.