If you are a building owner, then you’re probably familiar with the term ‘building warrant of fitness.’ This is something that every good building owner should be familiar with because it’ll help you stay within New Zealand’s guidelines and ensure that your building is safe and functional.

Managing your own building takes a lot of work, so it’s crucial that it is routinely inspected, cared for and maintained correctly. Otherwise, your structure may have issues you don’t know about - which could lead to disaster.

However, if you are unfamiliar with what this document is, it’s vital that you learn. This article will go over what exactly this is, why it is so important and how you can ensure that your building has an up-to-date one that is displayed correctly.

building warrant

What Is A BWOF And Where Should They Be Put?

A building warrant of fitness, which is often shortened to BWOF, is an annual statement that confirms that all of the specified systems on your building’s compliance schedule have been maintained correctly over the past year. In other words, it’s a yearly document that confirms that your building’s systems are safe and correctly maintained.

You can most likely already tell why a current BWOF is so important. Specified systems help your building run and help your building’s inhabitants stay safe, so leaving them unmaintained can be incredibly dangerous. Things like lifts, sprinkler systems, emergency alarms and more are all required to make sure a building is safe to use. If any of your specified systems are malfunctioning and something terrible happens, your building’s residents or workers could be put in serious danger.

So, by having a genuine and unexpired building warrant of fitness certificate on display, you are telling everyone in your building that they are safe to be there. Of course, once the year is up and your BWOF is expired, it’s vital that you take the proper steps to secure a new one.

Your BWOF should always remain displayed in a public area of your building. This is so that anyone who enters your building can see it.

Do I Need A BWOF?

It’s clear that this document is very important when it comes to ensuring that your building is safe, but do you really need one? To put it simply, yes - every building owner is required to have and display a current and legal building warrant of fitness.

If you do not get your BWOF, or if you fabricate and display a falsified one, you could face some significant fines and penalties. So, getting a legally-acquired one is a must.

Because this document is so important, it is recommended that you look into how to renew yours and whom to go for help before it expires. It would help if you kept an eye on your BWOF’s expiration date, so you aren’t blindsided when it expires. You may want to speak to professional help in advance to put everything in order.

To secure your own building warrant of fitness, your building must be inspected by a qualified inspector who can examine and confirm that all of your building’s specified systems are working correctly and safely. If they spot any problems or warning signs, then you should get those issues taken care of as soon as you can. You should hopefully not run into many issues if you take good care of your building and have any appliances or fixtures correctly maintained.

Your building warrant of fitness is an annual document, so you will need to have it renewed every year. However, you also may be required to provide your BWOF when your structure is being renovated in some way, your building has vacant spaces, any of your specified systems are being decommissioned or when you have taken out a building consent.

Overall, if you want to be smart and safe, it’s imperative that you are well aware of the status of your BWOF in case anything comes up. Doing so can protect your building’s inhabitants from disaster and can save you from legal trouble.

I Need Help Completing My BWOF, Where Can I Go For Help?

Are you interested in learning all about your building’s requirements or warrant? Or, do you need some help completing yours? If you require any help at all in making sure that your building is safe and property inspected, contact us at Compliance Consultants.

We are well aware of all of New Zealand’s building safety laws and we are eager to help you. Whether it’s securing your building’s warrant, checking up on your building compliance, learning about fire compliance or more, we are here for you.

To get in touch with our skilful team, we encourage you to visit our contact page or give us a ring at 0800 325 435.

Secure your building warrant of fitness with help from us at Compliance Consultants.