Amendments and minor variations

The key difference between an amendment and minor variation is that an amendment will occur when the changes materially affect compliance. A minor variation is work that does not materially affect compliance with the Building Code.

Amendments are to be applied for through Simpli, our electronic lodgement portal.
The minor variations form to be completed can be found in the forms section and emailed to


An amendment is a major variation which is generally where the work is outside the scope of the original consent. An amendment to a consent is processed through the system as per the original consent

The examples below are considered major variations because they impact on Building Code compliance and changes need to be re-drawn so the plans and specifications reflect what is to be built.

  • the applicant wants an en-suite bathroom to be installed instead of a walk-in wardrobe shown on the building consent drawings
  • a change to the assembly (for example, acrylic shower unit to a tiled shower unit)
  • timber joists complying with NZS 3604 are shown on the building consent drawings, but the applicant is advised by the builder to change to a manufactured proprietary joist system
  • the applicant wants to change part, or all, of the proposed cladding system from that approved in the original consent
  • a new house is approved with a perimeter foundation wall and ordinary internal piles, but it is decided instead to construct a complete timber pile foundation
  • additional footprint or increase in floor area, like the addition of a carport or garage
  • significant changes to layout.

Minor variations

Minor variations are changes that do not usually affect compliance with the Building Code. They are a minor modification, addition, or variation to a building consent that does not deviate significantly from the plans and specifications to which the building consent relates.

The following are examples of minor variations and do not constitute an exhaustive list:

  • substituting one internal lining for a similar internal lining
  • substituting the type of timber treatment
  • minor wall bracing changes
  • a change to a component (e.g. fixing bracket)
  • a construction change (e.g. the framing method around a window when the window is changed to a door)
  • changing a room’s layout (e.g. the position of fixtures in a bathroom or kitchen)
  • changing one brand of insulation for another
  • changing the type of taps
  • altering the position of kitchen joinery or non-structural walls or doors
  • building work described in schedule 1 of the Building Act 2004.

You will need to provide information to record the change, however it is not necessary to complete a new building consent application form. This may even be able to be approved on site by the inspector, depending on the change(s) made.

If the minor variation has already been discussed on site, follow the directions that were given in the inspection notice and identified in the required documentation.

There will be a cost involved in approving the minor variation – this is calculated on a time basis

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Lodge a building consent online through Simpli


How do I apply for an amendment? This will need to be an entirely new application and can be done through the Simpli electronic lodgement portal.

How do I apply for a minor variation? You will need to download the application form, fill it out and email to

What documentation is required for an amendment? You will need to provide documentation supporting the amendment. Depending on the nature of the amendment, information could include a site plan, floor plan, bracing plan, foundation plan or more. It is advised that you approach a designer for the relevant plans.