Some people who have no prior experience of building a home hear about planning approval and mistake it for building approval. This mix up leads them to run into many problems with the local authorities, such as being fined for undertaking a construction project without municipal approval. This article discusses the two concepts of planning approvals and building approvals. Use this information to discover when each is required. Planning Approvals Municipal authorities may have master plans that are intended to provide guidelines so that development takes place in an organised way. For instance, an area may be designated as an industrial area. Developers may only construct industrial facilities like factories and warehouses in such an area. You should submit the plans of your proposed home to the municipal authorities so that they confirm that the purpose to which you intend to put that piece of land is in line with what that area has been designated for. Building Approvals Building approvals differ from planning approvals in a sense that building approvals are focused on ensuring that the structure conforms to all set standards of building construction. You may need building approval for different phases of the construction project. For instance, you may need approval of the external structure before you can be allowed to begin doing work on aspects like installing the wiring system. You may also need approval of the fire safety systems in place before municipal approval of your project is given. In short, you should find out what the different building approvals you need are before you can occupy the house. Building approval requirements keep changing as more information becomes available on how to increase the safety of building occupants. The building codes also evolve to improve energy sustainability and environmental conservation. It is important for you to know the differences between the different approvals that are required in your area so that you do not get into any problems with the law. For instance, it may be hard for you to get a buyer for your property if it does not have the appropriate approvals in the records of the municipal authorities. You can also be prosecuted and asked to demolish a structure that wasn’t built according to local codes. The easiest way to ensure that you comply with all municipal requirements is to hire an experienced architect and builder to handle those technical aspects of the project. You can also hire certification companies, like Thomas Independent Certification, to conduct building approval inspections. Your role would then be to confirm that everything has been done as required by...