Hon Jenny Salesa
Minister for Building and Construction
11 July 2019
Over 120 standards used for Building Code compliance funded for free download
The Government has today announced over 120 standards used for Building Code compliance are now available to be accessed
and downloaded for free, says Building and Construction Minister Jenny Salesa.
The announcement was made at Housing New Zealand’s Eveleyn Couzins development in Christchurch, which was attended by
industry representatives and members of the community.
“I have listened to the building and construction sector, and professional groups who access these standards regularly,
and to New Zealand’s homeowners. They want to do the right thing but say financial barriers make it hard – today I am
making building compliance easier for all New Zealanders,” said Jenny Salesa.
“In December 2017, five important building Standards and a handbook were funded, and over 15,000 downloads have been
made in the last 18 months. Sponsoring another 120 Standards puts New Zealand on the leader board as one of the few
countries in the world offering free access to building standards.
“These building Standards are ones which directly help demonstrate compliance with the New Zealand Building Code. They
ensure our buildings and homes are safe and well-constructed.
“They will help building professionals and homeowners with methods for designing and constructing timber framing in
buildings and selecting appropriately treated timber used in building work. They will also help engineers with
earthquake loads on buildings.
“Step by step we are dismantling road blocks in the building sector. The success of the pilot will now snowball as we
fund these standards that directly help demonstrate compliance with the Building Code free for download.
“There is a cost to providing access to standards. The Government wants to help people ‘do the right thing’ and comply
more easily with the Building Code. I am delighted we have come up with a solution that acknowledges this cost of
access, and removes this barrier for users,” said Jenny Salesa.
The available standards can be accessed through the Standards New Zealand website: www.standards.govt.nz/sponsored-standards/building-standards/
and indirectly through www.codehub.building.govt.nz
Notes to Editors
MBIE is using funds from the Building Levy to fund the free-to-download of the Building Standards.
The levy is collected when people apply for building consent, and is usually spent on sector administration, regulation,
and enforcement of the Building Act.
Some of the standards that help demonstrate compliance with the New Zealand Building Code are:
o NZS 3604:2011 Timber-framed buildings. This is New Zealand’s most sought after standard, which is key for building professionals and homeowners. When read
together with Acceptable Solution B1/AS1, it describes Code-compliant methods for designing and constructing timber
framing in buildings.
o NZS 3602:2003 Timber and wood-based products for use in building and NZS 3640:2003 Chemical preservation of round and sawn timber are used to select appropriately treated timber used in building work.
o Another highly relevant standard for engineers, given recent events, is NZS 1170 Part 5:2004 Structural design actions - Part 5: Earthquake actions, which covers earthquake loads on buildings.
The pilot ‘free’ standards and a handbook made available in December 2017 were:
• Design for access and mobility: Buildings and associated facilities (NZS 4121:2001) - provides solutions for making
buildings and facilities accessible to and usable by people with disabilities.
• Housing, alterations and small buildings contract (NZS 3902:2004) - a plain English standard building contract.
• Thermal insulation - housing and small buildings (NZS 4218:2009) - helps establish the levels of thermal insulation
for houses and small buildings.
• Interconnected smoke alarms for houses (NZS 4514:2009) - provides information about the placement and audibility of
• Safety barriers and fences around swimming pools, spas and hot tubs (NZS 8500:2006) - describes barriers for
residential pools including ways to assess their strength.
• Handbook on Timber-framed buildings (selected extracts from NZS 3604:2011) - figures and tables to help design and
construct timber-framed buildings up to three storeys high.