Pergolas are an amazing addition to your outdoor space. Interesting and intricate, it adds charm and style to your area with its roofless design, which provides suitable shade from the sun, while still letting the fresh air in. More and more people have added pergolas to their outdoor areas, and for good reason. With its highly versatile design, not only can you purpose it to be a great outdoor entertainment area for those summer nights spent with friends and family, but if you have a green thumb, you can also use it as an extension of your garden. Pergolas that have vines integrated into the structure give off a fantastical feel that really sets a magical vibe in your outdoor area that would be a perfect backdrop for anything between entertaining guests to just relaxing in the comfort of your own backyard. But as with anything that needs building and installation, there are a few things that you need to know about before you start the process of creating your new outdoor space with Melbourne pergola builders.
Do I need a building permit for a pergola in Melbourne?
Different councils have different regulations for building. While friends and family may tell you that you don’t require a building permit for your Melbourne property, you should always check first with your local council if you need council approval for your planned pergola – Our team can also assist with this. Filing for a permit does mean you’ll have to pay a set cost that varies per council, but this is better than having to pay hefty non-compliance fees down the line.
In general, there are two types of permits that you may have to look into acquiring. Planning permits pertain to aesthetics and boundary regulations, and building permits focus more on safety regulations and compliance, as well as the details of the construction. Building permits are given by registered building surveyors while planning permits come from your local councils.
When it comes to permits, you have to look into four aspects to figure out if you may need a permit. If it is a closed roof structure, you may have to get one. Because pergolas can be open-roofed, you may think that this exempts it from needing a permit – but instead of assuming, it’s best to double-check for your own peace of mind. Decks, or footings with depth, need to be checked for their ability to cope with the decking and roofing. If you are building a structure that connects or attaches to your home, you may require a permit, and if the structure is to be built at a certain height with a requirement for a fence or railing, that will also require a permit.
What happens if you build a deck without a permit?
Building permits are not only necessary to ensure that your new structure is constructed legally, but it is also important as these types of permits are made specifically to pinpoint and comply with safety regulations.
While a pergola can be constructed as is, you may find that you wish to add a deck to provide a solid base and separation from the rest of your outdoor area. Adding a deck is a great way to really emphasise the beauty of the space and provide a stable and usable area for guests to mingle in. If this sounds like a good addition that you’ll be wanting to have, a deck should be easy to add to your construction. However, this comes with another set of considerations that you need to be aware of in order to be able to construct a structure that is not only legal, but also safe as according to council regulations.
Depending on your area, and the height of the deck that you wish to construct, it may be deemed unsafe and you might need the additional construction of railings or a fence to limit the chance of falls and injuries down the line. There are also aspects of construction that you may not be privy to that must be followed, and this is where Melbourne pergola builders come into play. But they can only start the process to your new outdoor space if all of the paperwork has been filed and approved, and this is not possible if the construction you are planning is not safe and legal.
So when you build a deck without permit, and without a professional builder constructing it for you, you may miss important safety issues that can cause problems for you and your family in the long run. Falls and injuries may seem like an impossibility, but it’s always best to adhere to safety requirements as dictated by the local council.
Aside from this, if your local council discovers that you have constructed a deck without the proper permits, not only will you be forced to remove this from your home, but you’ll also be struck with non-compliance fees that will add even more to the cost of removal. Not only is it a headache and can burn a hole in your pocket, but if you are planning to sell your home down the line, it can also prove to be an issue. This is because potential homeowners wanting to buy a home can and will ask if there was a planning and building permit for your deck, and the absence of either when it is required can dissuade potential buyers from making an offer, as it can be a liability for them years afterwards.
Once you have decided on building a pergola, and perhaps adding a deck to really give it that extra style, it’s important to do your research so you can find the Best Melbourne pergola builders in your area. Ensure that the builders you hire are knowledgeable, professional, and are highly motivated to see your outdoor area plans turn into reality.