Cert of compliance with building regs for exempt extension


I am selling my house. I had an extension built, under 40sqm so is exempt from planning. I applied for the cert of exemption for this.
I engaged an architect who designed the extension, did the tender and managed the payments to builder so carried out numerous inspections while the building work went on.
The architect will supply a certificate of exemption from planning however he is looking for a fee of 650 ex VAT to provide a certificate of compliance with the building regulations. I have an engineers cert for the structural works already.

For a sale where the extension is exempt from planning, is a Certificate of Compliance with building regs definitely required?

Is the fee being charged by the architect excessive? It seems it is just confirming the work he carried out and was paid for already.

Can anyone advise on this?


Yes it’s required, and yes, that’s excessive.

You can get an opinion of compliance letter/certificate from another architect or engineer for less than that, which will suffice for the sale of the house.

Hi Lexa,
First of all it’s necessary to distinguish between the Building Regulations and the Building Control Regulations.

The Building Regulations will apply in the case of the works being done of the extension to your dwelling (assuming the extension was greater than 25m2 but less than 40m2), i.e. the building should be built correctly in accordance with the standards as required by the Building Regulations.

In regard to whether you do require a Certificate of Compliance on Completion with the Building Regulations, this is a matter of the Building Control Regulations.

If your extension is less than 40m2 then you would need to submit a commencement notice to the Building Control Authority and that would suffice for you from legal regulatory standpoint however there may be other legal reasons outside of the Building Control Regulations that you may wish to seek a Certificate of Compliance on Completion.

irishstatutebook.ie/eli/2014 … ade/en/pdf

“(2) The requirements of paragraph (1)(b) shall apply to the following works and buildings—
(a) the design and construction of a new dwelling,
(b) an extension to a dwelling involving a total floor area greater than 40 square metres,
© works to which Part III applies”

I accept no responsibility for any of the above information. It is recommended that you make contact with a professional competent and qualified person of your local Building Control Authority in order to seek further confirmation and information of any sort that may be relevant to this enquiry or other related enquiries.

Hex, can you kindly provide reference to what basis that you have as to the requirement, and, to the excessive cost?

I have an engineers cert that covers the foundations, walls, steelwork and roof structure comply with the building regs.
I am not sure what the Certificate of Compliance with building regs from the Architect covers?

It appears that your engineers cert covers mainly Part A, i.e Structural matters, of the Building Regulations.

There are also other matters to be aware of:
Part B: Fire Safety (escape windows, fitment of fire alarm, fire stopping, etc. etc.)
Part C: Resistance to Environmental issues (e.g. Radon Barrier, Weatherproofing, Moisture Ingress etc. etc.)
Part D: Materials and Workmanship (were the right and correct bits and pieces chosen and were they correctly used by workers while the works were being undertaken)
Part E: Sound (generally not a major issue for extensions but should be looked at anyway by the architect)
Part F, G, H, J, K, L, M.
The Architect will have to look at all of the above in a full Certificate of Compliance on Completion (CCC) as well as also verifying the Engineers work or relying on it as part of an Ancillary Certificate to the CCC.

I acccept no responsibility as earlier stated…

When were the works carried out?

Basis as to the requirement: Sale of our house this year - with extension, under planning req floor space, but without certification at time of construction. Solicitor and agent both very clear that contracts couldn’t be signed without cert or opinion of compliance.

Basis as to excessive cost: Obtained opinion of compliance as to both planning regulations and building regulations for a good deal less than what you’ve been quoted for your architect providing cert of compliance.

About a year ago

No, it will not necessarily suffice. It’s up to the buyer whether or not they accept this, and if so if they haggle on the price, expecting that some works may be required. Personally I would be very suspicious of a sale without a cert from the supervising architect or engineer - although it’s not as big a deal since OP has a engineer’s cert for the structural works. But don’t assume it will always be accepted without question.

600 euros for the certs are about right.

Certificate of compliance with Planning Permission,
Certificate of compliance with Building Regs.

Check the RIAI website for the fee structure. or just give them a ring and they should give independent advise on what the recommend their members charge for such work.

Not everybody engages an architect for such works (nor need they) which means it’s not possible to certify after the fact that the building conforms to regs. Why not let your extension be such a one?

I’ve sold two houses in recent years using an architect to give an opinion on compliance with planning exemption and on conformance to building standards. The letters were littered with the phrase “substantially conforms” and he spend about 10 minutes looking round. About €300 each time total cost.

It’s up to the buyer to accept whatever they like - cert of compliance included. The question is whether an opinion of compliance generally/typically proven to have been an obstacle to a sale, or are they generally/typically sufficient for reassuring the buyer and meeting the legal requirements of the sale. So, the assumption that an opinion will substitute for a certificate in most cases is based on the *actuality *of the typical acceptance of opinions in lieu of certs.

The difference is what’s necessary vs what’s sufficient. Don’t assume it’s sufficient for all buyers.

However the evidence is that they are normally sufficient for buyers. No doubt there’s the odd buyer that has doubts about a certificate of compliance too - but that doesn’t mean they’re not sufficient either.

Correct. If I was a seller in the current climate of precarious mortgage approvals though, I’d not want to give buyers any reason/excuse to waver or argue about pricing, or do anything to delay the sale. For the sake of a couple of hundred quid, I’d get the proper cert. That just makes the whole thing a non-issue.

+1, that’s actually a good way to frame it.
From OP’s point of view, if you’re being charged say €800 for the certification, and what you get is what you want (i.e. it’s supplied as asked) the very most you’re conceivably being over-charged is €800, and it’s certainly less than that as the fair price for the docs is more than zero.

Pricing is a funny business! Could have buried €400 somewhere else in the project and probably never get noticed, put it on this bill though and it sticks in the throat!

The architect will supply the Certificate of Compliance with the exemption from Planning - included in the fees I already paid.
However he is looking for 650 to provide the Cert of Compliance with building regs. I am wondering what work is involved here? He drew up the plans and supervised the build already and was paid for that. I don’t see this as being any additional work for him?
What exactly is involved in providing a Cert of Compliance with building regs? I already have a cert from Engineer to state foundations, structure etc comply. What additional part is the architect confirming?

I presume it’s a liability risk issue. His insurance is on the hook if it turns out something is in fact noncompliant.

But yeah, I suspect that if you’d specified this as part of the work at the start he might have agreed to throw it in.

is that standard is he just ripping me off?
If his design complies with building regs as it should have, and he supervised the builders, the what else does he have to do?

Alternatively can someone recommend someone who can provide this certification with building regs for less than 650?
Can engineers provide this certification?