Do you want to pursue your career as a builder in Australia? Are you unsure whether becoming a builder is the ideal career option for you? If Yes, then you have landed at the right place!
A builder in Australia must ensure that the construction adheres to the regulations prescribed at local, regional, and national levels and is compliant with worksite safety laws.
Each state in Australia has varied requirements when it comes to becoming a licensed builder. They can range from education and work experience to financial resources and references. Learning about these requirements is essential before getting a builder’s license.
Our detailed post will help you understand how to become a builder in Australia and the eligibility and license requirements in every state and territory of Australia.
1. Who Is A Builder?
Before we learn what qualifications do you need to be a builder, let us first understand the roles and responsibilities of a builder. A builder is a trained and licensed professional who supervises and manages the construction, revamp or restoration of a residential and commercial premise.
The main role of a builder is to provide skilled contractors to accomplish the necessary job on site. He should specialize in a specific project type that includes housing developments, eco homes, customized builds of a specific design.
Some of their responsibilities involve:
Evaluation of potential construction locations
Reading and understanding architectural plans
Perform cost estimation that will help in getting planning permission
Obtain pertinent building permits
Recruit and coordinate subcontractors
Plan and supervise schedule for construction
Ensure hygiene and safety on the construction site and adherence to government building regulations
2. What Does It Require To Become A Builder In Australia?
In Australia, an aspiring builder must fulfill certain prerequisites to become a licensed/registered builder. He/she must obtain a license by the regulating body of the chosen state or territory in the country.
To become a successful builder, you must demonstrate the following personal skills:
Effective people skills that include interpersonal and communication skills
Good leadership and management abilities
Analytical thinking, proper planning, and administrative skills
Aptitude and Reasoning for technical activities
Good problem solving and decision-forming abilities
Ability to complete their assigned project to a professional standard.
Construction work requires strength, good balance, and coordination. An applicant should have a lot of physical stamina to sustain acute injuries.
A good understanding of ergonomics like right correct lifting posture etc.
A good knowledge of workplace health and safety regulations and ways to implement them.
Strong practical skills to produce a high-quality outcome.
3. What are the steps to becoming a Builder in Australia?
Here are a few steps on how to get a builder’s license.
Following these steps will help you obtain a builder’s license in Australia:
Pass a safety induction program
You need to pass the course and obtain a white card. Later, you must undergo mandatory training in construction.
Pass a Certificate IV in Building and Construction
Australia follows the Australian Qualifications Framework that defines the various standards for educational qualifications within Australia.
A Certificate IV in Building and Construction is a good entry point into construction. The total duration of this course is 34 weeks.
Get some work experience as a builder
In addition to education, you need to get some work experience to be eligible for a builder’s license.
You should have a minimum of 2 years of experience to work as a builder across different Australian states and territories.
Obtain your state-specific license
Once you have completed the certification and obtained the necessary work experience, the final step is to apply for a builder’s license.
In a few states, you may even need to attend an ongoing training workshop to keep your registration active.
This was just a general overview of getting a builder’s license. Scroll down to learn about the criteria to obtain a license in different territories or states in Australia.
4. What Are The Different Training Options Available?
HIA prescribes nationally accredited training (NRT) to aspiring builders to help gain their builder’s license or registration. It also helps to stay updated with the changes in the industry.
Nationally Recognised Training is a combination of short training programs or a full qualification like a Certificate IV.
Professional Development workshops offer information that helps enhance the knowledge and skills of a person. It is recommended to attend this training and workshop as part of the application or maintenance of a builder’s license.
5. How Much Time Does It Require To Become A Builder In Australia?
Considering all the above requirements, it takes around 2 to 4 years to become a builder in Australia.
Your education, certification, chosen state/territory, and practical experience will give you the exact timeframe required to become a builder.
6. Prerequisites To Apply For A NSW Builder’s Licence
In New South Wales, the entire process of licensing and registration of a builder is controlled by the NSW Department of Fair Trading.
Here are the key things to fulfill to become a licensed builder in NSW:
A minimum of 2 years of relevant and paid industry work experience in different types of building construction work.
One of the ways to gain experience is by working as an employee under the management of a certified builder. Alternatively, you can work as a sub-contractor who is selected as the overseer of a Contractor Licence.
The good thing about getting a builder’s license is that you can complete your work experience in all parts. A gap of a few months in between jobs is fine. Though, you must certify that you have full-time equivalent experience of two years over a maximum time limit of ten years from the application date.
You must provide references from a licensed builder who has an Individual Contractor Licence or Qualified Supervisor Certificate in the area of General Building Work. This certificate must be issued by NSW Fair Trading.
You must provide a CPC40120 Certificate IV in Building and Construction. Along with this certificate, you need at least one of the below-mentioned documents.
Diploma of Building and Construction (Building) CPC50208 or BCG50206.
Diploma of Building and Construction (Building) CPC50210 should have the below-mentioned units:
A degree in structural engineering, civil engineering, housing, architecture, construction, construction economics, construction management, construction project management, quantity surveying, applied science (building) or a bachelor of Housing from an Australian university.
For more information on how to apply for a builder’s license in NSW, visit the NSW Fair Trading.
7. Prerequisites To Apply For A QLD (Queensland) Builder’s Licence
The entire process of builders licensing in Queensland is supervised by the Queensland Building and Construction Commission.
To apply for the license in this state, you need to have the following:
2 to 4 years of work experience.
Formal qualifications on the class of license.
Three written references.
Financial information that certifies that you fulfil the minimum financial requirements.
If you are working as a contractor under a trading name, then you should provide the latest copy of the Record of Registration from ASIC.
If you are working under a partnership, then you should provide proof of the business partnership.
To know more about how to become a builder in QLD, visit the Queensland Building and Construction Commission website.
8. Prerequisites To Apply For A NT (Northern Territory) Builder’s Licence
Building Practitioners Board is the body that regulates builders licensing in the Northern Territory.
An individual can choose from the two types of licenses:
Building Contractor Residential (Restricted)
Building Contractor Residential (Unrestricted)
The criteria to apply for the above licenses are as follows:
Certificate IV in the area of Building and Construction.
At least three years of work experience.
Financial information that certifies that you fulfil the minimum financial requirements.
Should not be barred from practicing the trade, business, or occupation in Australia.
Click here to learn about the Northern Territory Building Practitioners Board.
9. Prerequisites To Apply For A TAS (Tasmania) Builder’s Licence
The Department of Justice in Tasmania is the governing body that oversees builders licensing in the State. Before you apply for a builder’s license, it is important to learn about the different types of builder accreditation.
Choose from the below list:
Fire Protection Services Builder
Choose the type of class within each of the above-mentioned categories:
You should fulfil a range of different prerequisites before applying for any class.
In the case of a low rise, a candidate should have 2 years of experience with a building trade qualification or 4 years of experience without this qualification.
For a low-rise category, a candidate should have 2 years of experience with a building trade qualification or 4 years of experience without this qualification.
For a medium rise category, a candidate should have 2 years of experience with a building trade qualification or 6 years of experience without this qualification.
Two elaborate references from credited practitioners or industry professionals.
Financial data that confirms that you fulfil the minimum level of financial requirements.
Applicants may have to participate in a face-to-face interview.
To know more about how to become a builder in TAS, visit the Department of Justice (Tasmania).
10. Prerequisites To Apply For An ACT Builder’s Licence
The ACT Government Department of Environment and Sustainable Development is the body that governs the builder’s license application process.
Learn about the different types of builders’ licenses before you apply for them. The requirement for different categories of builders’ licenses is different.
Class A Builder (unlimited)
Class B Builder (medium rise)
Class C Builder (low rise or residential)
Class D Builder
Class A Builder: A Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate, bachelor’s degree, Post Graduate degree or Doctoral degree in Building
Class B Builder: A CPC50210 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building)
Class C Builder: A CPC50210 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building), a CPC40110 Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building), and a written exam.
Before issuance of a license, you need to secure 80% or above in the written examination conducted by the Construction Occupations Registrar.
Class D Builder: There are no qualifications needed.
Class A, Class B, and Class C Builder: A minimum of 2 years of full-time work experience in building. Out of the 2 years of experience, one year of that experience should complete after the issuance of qualification.
Class D Builder: A minimum of 3 years of full-time work experience in building.
To know more on how to apply for an ACT builder’s license, visit the ACT government website.
11. Prerequisites To Apply For A VIC (Victoria) Builder’s Licence
In Victoria, VBA or the Victorian Building Authority manages the process of builder registration.
The common types of such registration in Victoria are:
Domestic Builder (Unlimited)
Domestic Builder (Manager)
Domestic Builder (Limited)
Commercial Builder (Unlimited)
Commercial Builder (Limited)
Applicants should first learn about the above-mentioned registration types to be able to work on projects and sites properly.
You need to meet the below conditions to qualify for each builder’s registration in Victoria:
A minimum of 3 years’ full-time work experience in building.
Duly complete the registration application form along with proof of experience, etc.
Pass a written test
You may need to attend a face-to-face interview.
You should have complete knowledge of the national building codes.
To know more about how to become a builder in VIC, visit the Victorian Building Authority.
12. Prerequisites To Apply For A WA (Western Australia) Builders Licence
Western Australian Building Commission is the regulatory body that oversees and manages the process to get a builder’s license in Western Australia.
The state offers two main types of licenses to its applicants:
Licensed Building Practitioner for companies, individuals, and associations who want to offer their services as a builder.
Practitioner registration is only for individuals who want to work as a builder.
Having decided on the most suitable category, you now need to meet the following requirements:
Must have an experience between 5 to 7 years based on sub-type of license.
Must fulfill formal qualifications of the class of license you have applied for.
Must provide valid references.
Must not have been prohibited from working trade, business, or occupation in Australia.
Must showcase possession of adequate financial resources.
To know more about how to become a builder in WA, visit the Western Australia Building Commission.
13. Prerequisites To Apply For A SA (South Australia) Builders Licence
The Government of South Australia Consumer and Business Services is the body that oversees builders licensing in South Australia.
Following are the two modes to get a builder's license:
It is important to select the type of construction and building where you operate. This is important as each specialty needs different experience levels and other requirements.
Experience as required based on the type of license
A thorough check by an Australian police officer
A proof that shows adequate financial resources for the type of license for which you have applied. In general, it ranges between $10,000 to $100,000 in net assets
Must not be debarred from practicing occupation, trade, or business in Australia.
To know more about how to become a builder in SA, visit the SA government’s website.
Getting licensed/registered is mandatory to work as a builder in any state or territory in Australia.
As the construction industry in the country requires adherence to work quality and safety standards, the process to obtain a builder’s license may take a lot of time.
Thorough preparation and timely implementation of the above steps will help you obtain your builder’s license easily.
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