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29 September 2023


Planning approvals and building permits are different and are controlled by different legislation. This means that you may need to apply for planning approval, or a building permit, or both depending on your proposed development or land use.

If your development does require planning approval, you must obtain the planning approval before lodging an application for a building permit.  Site plans, elevations and floor plans are required for a planning application, however more detailed construction drawings are required for the separate building application process.

The Shire of Cranbrook is responsible for controlling land use and the design and positioning of all buildings. It is also responsible for ensuring building plans comply with the operative Town Planning Scheme, the Residential Design Codes, the Shire’s Policies and the Building Code of Australia.

The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety website has information on Building, including a handy guide to the building approvals process in WA, as well as current building forms, notices and certificates.

Building Approvals

A building permit is required prior to commencing any building work involving the development of new structures, alterations or extensions and changes in ground levels including garages, patios, sheds, residential dwellings, granny flats, extensions, swimming pools and retaining walls etc. Similarly a demolition permit is required before any demolition works can commence. If the total value of work exceeds $20,000 a permit can only be issued to a registered builder or registered owner builder. Please read through the owner builder application for more information.

Applying for a Building Permit

Anyone can apply for a building permit, the owner, builder, designer, building surveyor or any other person. The applicant provides details of the person responsible for the work, ie the builder, in the application form. The builder takes responsibility for ensuring the construction complies with the applicable building standards and the provisions in the building permit.

There are two types of building permit applications, ‘certified’ (Form BA1) and ‘uncertified’ (Form BA2). Which ever one applies must be submitted with required information and the fees payable.

Building Application Forms

Certified Application

A certified application is accompanied by a certificate of design compliance (CDC), issued by a private Building Surveyor that certifies the design of the proposed building works in compliance to the Australian Standards, BCA and all other associated legislation and can be made for any class of building and incidental structure.

A CDC cannot be signed off until a Development Approval, if applicable, is provided and an approval for Onsite Sewage Treatment and Disposal, if applicable, has been sought after and approved.

Applications for Class 1b and Class 2 to Class 9 buildings must be made as certified applications whereas this is optional for Class 1a and 10 buildings and incidental structures. Information about building classes can be viewed here.

The Shire has 10 business days to decide on a certified application.

Uncertified Application

An uncertified application is submitted to the Shire without a certificate of design compliance (CDC) and can only be made for Class 1a and Class 10 buildings and incidental structures.

If you are submitting an uncertified application please be sure to complete this  form and complete this checklist prior to your submission

The Building Surveyor at the Shire will check the proposal and provide a certificate of design compliance. The Shire has 25 business days to decide on an uncertified application.

A Guide to the Building Approval Process in Western Australia

This guide will help you understand the process for obtaining approval to build and occupy a building in Western Australia.

A guide to the building approvals process in Western Australia | Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (


Applications must be accompanied by all required plans and associated fees in order to be lodged with the Shire. For guidance in your application, download our Residential Dwelling or Dwelling Addition Information and Checklist, Here.

Applications can be submitted via post to Shire of Cranbrook PO Box 21 CRANBROOK WA 6321, emailed to or in person at the Shire Administration office located at 19 Gathorne Street, Cranbrook.

If you have any questions regarding building applications please contact or telephone 9826 1008.