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September 2019

Building standards made more accessible

09 Aug 2019, Industry Updates, Learn, News, Technical

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has funded over 120 building standards

After hearing concerns by building practitioners that the cost of standards can be a barrier to applying best practice, MBIE hopes free download availability will remove barriers and improve compliance with the Building Code.

The selected standards were identified specifically as those that directly help demonstrate compliance with the Building Code and will have the best chance of improving results in safe and well-constructed buildings and homes. Freely available standards include NZS 3604:2011 Timber-framed buildings, NZS 3109:1997 Concrete construction, NZS 3404.1&2:1997 Steel structures standard, and NZS 4229:2013 Concrete masonry buildings not requiring specific engineering design. 

The list of free standards includes 85 current and 35 superseded standards. This means people can look back on standards like NZS 3604 and see changes over time. View list of standards here:


This isn’t the first time MBIE has removed the cost barrier from standards. In December 2017, five prominent building standards and a handbook were made available by MBIE free of charge, attracting more than 15,000 downloads in the last 18 months.

New Zealand is now one of the few countries in the world providing free access to building standards.

The available standards can be accessed through the Standards New Zealand website, and indirectly through www.building.govt.nz and www.codehub.building.govt.nz

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