Building Control Approvers

‘Approved inspectors’ in England may have to change to ‘building control approvers’ under a new proposal by the government.

A proposal was submitted in January named the, ‘Consultation for changes to the building control profession and the building control process for approved inspectors (in future to be known as registered building control approvers).’

The proposal by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, ended in March and was to gather opinions about this matter.

But what’s in the proposal and what does it mean for approved inspectors?


What’s the reason for the proposal?

A Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety was carried out after the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

It stated numerous recommendations that should be implemented to focus on managing risk to help building owners make sure properties are safe.

It also aims to create a framework to provide better quality homes.

The review raised concerns about the lack of a level playing field for approved inspectors and local authority building control.

The system is currently complicated with different statutory and non-statutory processes which creates confusion.

The proposal aims to improve building control standards and create a regulated building control profession under a new Building Safety Act 2022 and associated secondary legislation.

The new legislation will be overseen by a Building Safety Regulator which will create requirements for building control professions.


What is the change for approved inspectors?

The overall recommendations are to change who can advise and carry out building control work.

The aim is to ensure only those who are capable of doing this are allowed to do so.

There will be transitional proposals to slowly bring this in but once the proposals set in, an approved building inspector will not be able to submit new initial notice or supervise any new work.


What are the key changes?

There are several key changes, but the main ones include:

  • Any approved inspectors have to register as building control approvers to continue undertaking building control
  • Inspectors need to register with the Building Safety Regulator and meet the requirements
  • Registered building control approvers and building control authorities must obtain the advice of a registered building inspector before starting any building control work
  • There will be other changes intended regarding sanctions and appeals, initial notices, plans certificates, information gathering, and consultations with other regulators.



Registration may be different depending on the types of work undertaken and may be subject to certain conditions.

The Building Safety Regulator will be able to set different levels of registration and codes which will need to be met.

If you are working on high-risk buildings, you may need to meet a higher standard of training and experience.

For any building control bodies who are approved inspectors under the Construction Industry Council Approved Inspectors Register (CICAIR), they will need to register with the Building Safety Regulator as building control approvers.


How long does registration last?

Once you have registered as a building control approver, the registration length is proposed for four years.

This is to avoid the hassle of having to register on a regular basis, but it needs to be frequent enough to ensure professionals meet the appropriate standards to ensure safety. 


Restricted activities

There will be different classes under which a building inspector will need to be registered.

This is to ensure certain building control work is carried out by an appropriate professional.

The proposed restricted activities for local authorities include:

  • When deposit of plans is submitted under any provision of the Building Regulations 2010, checking the application and plans for compliance with any requirement of the building regulations.

Proposed restricted activities for local authorities and registered building control approvers include:

  • When initial notice, plans certificate, or an amendment notice is given under the Building Regulations 2010, checking of plans for compliance with any requirement of the building regulations
  • Where an inspection of work is carried out for the purpose of checking compliance with any requirement of the building regulations, the carrying out of that inspection.


How to register as a Building Control Approver

If you are an approved inspector, you must register as a building control approver with the Building Safety Regulator.

This must be done by the time the registration becomes mandatory, six months after the register opens.


Building control approvers

This new proposal of changing ‘approved inspectors’ to ‘building control approvers’ is to ensure safety regarding building control.

The changes focus on who can advise and carry out building control work.

Approved inspectors, if they wish, will have to register with a Building Safety Regulator, if they want to continue certain works.

Depending on the type of work you wish to undertake, you will have to meet certain requirements and experience conditions which will be set by the Building Safety Regulator.

There will be a transition period of six months to allow you to register but after this time you may not be able to continue certain work if you have not registered.

Any approved inspectors should keep up to date with any changes to ensure they can continue to carry out certain work.

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