Ensure you meet your administrative requirements when re-roofing

QBCC Inspectors have identified an issue with re-roofing work, with contractors failing to ensure payment of Home Warranty Scheme premiums and failing to obtain a valid Building Approval.

QBCC Commissioner, Brett Bassett, has reminded contractors that they must comply with relevant standards and building codes.

Mr Bassett said the issues relating to re-roofing work had become evident during proactive inspections of construction work by QBCC Technical Standards Unit officers.


Payment of a Home Warranty Scheme premium is required to be paid when the value of a re-roofing contract exceeds $3,300 on a residential building.

The value of the building work includes all labour and materials, whether they are supplied by the contractor or not, as well as GST.

The premium must be paid within 10 business days after the date the contract was entered into or before the works start (whichever is earlier).

Building approval

When roofing works involve the replacement of more than 20 per cent of the existing roof area, a Building Approval is required. The building approval must be obtained by either the roofing contractor or the property owner.

The general durability of roofs means that it is not uncommon for a roof covering to last 40 to 50 years before replacement is necessary.

During that timeframe, building standards and the performance of the materials used for roofing can change dramatically. As such, the intended performance of the new roof system needs to be properly assessed. This is the primary reason why a Building Approval must be sought when replacing a roof.

The Building Approval is reviewed by a building certifier who is responsible for ensuring that the roofing system being proposed is suitable for its intended purpose and compliant with current standards. Those standards include but are not limited to batten size and spacings, and tie-down, including the existing roof frame.

The above assessment is required whether a roof is being replaced due to age and disrepair, or, for example, under an insurance claim following damage from a severe weather event such as a cyclone. 

Who is responsible?

Roofing contractors should ensure their quotes and contracts clearly state whether the property owner or roofing contractor is responsible for obtaining the necessary building approval.  


North Queensland’s experience with tropical cyclones has demonstrated that when buildings are constructed to current building standards the new housing stock performs well.

Issues can arise, however, if re-roofs have not been performed to current standards or codes. In those instances, significant damage can occur, including total loss of the roof frame.

The QBCC urges contractors who are considering re-roofing works on existing Queensland housing stock to ensure that the new roof and existing framing system comply with current standards as far as practicable.

With greater scrutiny of re-roofing works through Building Approval assessment processes, it is envisaged that the existing housing stock will become more resilient to cope with severe weather events, such as cyclones or severe storms.  

More information

The QBCC has produced a number of resources for roofing work and permit requirements in cyclone zones:

Repair of sheet metal roofs in cyclonic areas (PDF)
It may pay to check your roof framing following Cyclone Debbie (PDF)
Permit requirements for repairing and rebuilding after a cyclone (PDF)