Victoria adopts the new National Construction Code

The Building and Plumbing Codes of Australia have changed. On 1 May 2019, the National Construction Code 2019 came into effect, introducing significant changes to the technical requirements for building and plumbing work in Victoria.

The NCC defines the minimum necessary requirements for new buildings and new building work in Australia. It ensures all building and plumbing work meets nationally-approved standards for the design, construction, performance and liveability of buildings. Health and safety, amenity and accessibility, and sustainability are core considerations.

Significant changes have been made to the NCC 2019. These include:

  • quantification – around 40 per cent of performance requirements will be verified directly or by an NCC Verification Method
  • readability – language, content and structure across all three volumes of the NCC have been simplified and standardised
  • mandatory fire sprinkler protection requirements for apartments, hotels and other multi-residential buildings
  • new energy efficiency requirements to reduce energy consumption in new buildings by up to 35 per cent
  • new requirements for accessible adult change facilities in public buildings
  • strict regulations on the use of bonded laminated materials, such as cladding
  • new standards to improve waterproofing and prevent condensation in buildings
  • new requirements for heated water temperature control, cross-connection control and the harvesting and use of rainwater
  • changes to evidence of suitability requirements for building products; and
  • the addition of new and amended Acceptable Construction Practices.

Industry professionals and owner-builders can download a copy of the National Construction Code 2019 from the Australian Building Codes Board website.

The VBA is also delivering a series of seminars on the NCC during May, June and July. These seminars are free and will be held throughout regional Victorian and metropolitan Melbourne.

The VBA strongly encourages all industry professionals and apprentices to attend one of these industry-specific sessions, in order to reinforce and update their knowledge of the technical requirements for building and plumbing in Victoria.