Renovation, Maintenance and Building Works for Private Properties

If you are looking to renovate your private property such as private homes or agricultural and livestock buildings, do note that some renovation works, (e.g. demolition of columns) may require BCA’s approval. You can find the approval process for renovation works on this page.

If you plan to make additions and alterations, or perform reconstructive works on your property, you will need to obtain BCA’s approval before construction works can commence.

You are advised to read this page in consultation with your appointed Qualified Person (QP).

However, there are some minor building works that are exempt from this requirement. For details of the structural works that are exempted, please refer to the First Schedule of the Building Control Regulations. You can also find out more on “insignificant building works” at Building Works that does not require Plan Submission to BCA.

What are Private Homes?

Private homes typically refer to landed houses, apartment buildings, condominium, cluster housing and residential units in a mixed development. 

private landed houses
private landed houses

Private landed terrace houses
private landed terrace houses

For landed houses, besides referring to Building Works that does not require Plan Submission to BCA, you may also refer to Exemptions for Building Works in Landed Houses for additional exemptions. Homeowners are also encouraged to read the “Be Good Neighbours’ guide”  for good practices to follow when carrying out building works in landed housing estates, and to refer to the Safe Slope and Slope Protection Structures to safeguard their property and public from soil erosion and damages of their slopes and slope protection structures respectively.

For Stata Title developments e.g. condominiums, MCST’s approval might be required for renovation works. For more info on strata living and by-laws, please refer to the Strata Management Guides (SMGs).

For HDBs, please refer to HDB’s website for more info.

Approval Process for Renovation Works

Step    Notes

1a. Submit Building Plans for Approval 
(Normal Submission – works that affect drainage reserve or public sewer)

  • Application must be submitted by a Qualified Person (QP) – a registered architect or a registered professional civil or structural engineer (PE). The plans have to carry a certification by the PE that he has inspected the building and investigated its overall structure and that the building is capable of resisting additional load and moment of the proposed building works.
  • Fee for building plan submission:
    • $200 for every 100m2 of new area or extended area or part thereof.
    • $100 for alteration or amendment to each approved storey.
    • $100 per submission for ancillary works not related to the above.
Processing time: Within 14 working days. A Notice of Approval will be issued and a set of approved plans will be microfilmed and returned to the QP. 

1b. Submit Building Plans for Approval 
(Simplified Submission – works that do not affect drainage reserve or public sewer)

  • Building plans for additions and alterations to landed houses can be submitted through the simplified submission system if the works do not affect the drainage reserve or the public sewer.
  • The QP must purchase copies of Sewerage Interpretation Plan (SIP) and Drainage Interpretation Plan (DIP) from the Ministry of the Environment and must ensure that the proposal does not encroach on any Drainage Reserve or affect existing sewer lines before making the simplified submission to BCA.
Processing time: Applications can be processed and approved within one working day. The QP can also collect the Notice of Approval on the spot if he wants to. 

2. Get Approval of Structural Plans 
(If project involves structural works)

  • If the building project also involves structural works, you need to obtain approval of the structural plans from the Building Engineering Group of BCA before you can commence the structural works.
  • Structural plans must be submitted by a QP who is a registered Professional Engineer in the civil or structural engineering discipline. 
Processing time: The time taken for the approval of structural plans can vary greatly depending on its complexity. In general, projects where an accredited checker’s (AC) certificate is not required will be processed within 7 days, while those which require an AC certificate will be processed within 14 days. 

3. Apply for a Permit to Carry Out Building Works

  • Application for this permit can be made either concurrently with the application for structural plans approval (Step 2) or after structural plans have been approved.
  • Application for this permit must be jointly made by:
    • The building owner or developer.
    • The Qualified Persons responsible for the supervision of the building works.
    • The builder who will carry out the building works.

The Commissioner of Building Control will grant a permit, together with any terms or conditions to be imposed, to the applicant, builder, and Qualified Persons.



4. Application for Occupation of Completed Building Works

Upon completion of renovation works, a Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) or a Certificate of Statutory Completion (CSC) will have to be obtained by the developer/QP before the building can be occupied.


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