BRegs Blog

A blog to debate the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations (BCAR): The BRegs Blog presents an opportunity for free expression of opinion on BCAR and their implementation. The blog is not representative of any professional body or organisation. Each post represents the personal opinion of that contributor and does not purport to represent the views of all contributors.

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Code of Practice for Building Control (Amendment) Regulation (SI.9 of 2014)

The Code of practice for SI.9 was released late last week. Link to pdf: 2014-02-07 Code of Practice Building Control Regulations 2014 Advertisements

RIAI advice to Practices on BC(A)R SI.9

The following RIAI advice on BC(A)R SI.9 was issued to RIAI Practices last week, dated May 8th 2014. Extract to follow: ____________ THE PRACTICE DIRECTOR JOE MILLER IS CIRCULATING TO RIAI PRACTICES FAQS ON BC(A)R 2014  The answers given to the FAQs are based on our interpretation of the Regulations at present. 1)  Q.: What Legal Documents […]

Practical post 15: Code of conduct issues

Practical Post 15: Code of Conduct issues & BC(A)R SI.9? I am a sole trader architect in a regional city. I have recently got a new client with a project that is bigger than my usual work and I have an opportunity to secure my income for the next two years. When I was appointed I […]

The Engineers Journal: how BC(A)R SI.9 works in practice

The following article appeared in The Engineers Journal on 24th April 2014: “Building Control Regulations: how it works in practice“. In it, architect Orla Fitzgerald MRIAI notes the time required to discharge duties of new certifier roles under Building Control (Amendment) Regulations (SI.9 of 2014): “there is…a requirement for an additional 18 days of input“. One of the […]

Press Article: New code could add €50k onto cost of self-builds

From the Irish Examiner, Friday, February 21, 2014. Extract: ________ People planning to build their dream home are in for a nasty shock following the introduction of new building control regulations, which could add up to €50,000 extra on to the cost of a constructing a one-off dwelling. Clare councillor Richard Nagle predicts the new […]

SI.9 “each phase should be designed to stand alone” | BCMS

The following email question to, and answer from the Building Control Management System (BCMS) was sent to us by a registered professional on the 11th December 2014. The BCMS confirm that ” each phase of the development must be compliant and not have outstanding compliances in other phases even if this requires completing all the development works in […]

DCC Certifiers: only architects need apply!

Here is a project recently advertised by Dublin City Council at a value between €200k and €600k. Listed as part of Architectural services are Assigned and Design certifier duties. We wonder have any specialist Certifiers, non-architects Chartered Surveyors or Chartered Engineers (SCSI or ACEI members) lodged Competition Authority complaints against this restrictive practice, appointing only architects to […]

Press: SI.9 Advisors- who and how much?

The following article by Astrid Madden in “Self Build and improve your home” appeared in the Winter edition off the magazine, and was blogged on 30th September 2014. Link to online version here. Extract: Advisors: Who they are, what they do and how much they cost Architect and architectural technologist: They are mostly concerned with the […]

Ghost estates and public housing: BC(A)R SI.9 | look back 6

Ghost estates and public housing: BC(A)R SI.9 | look back 6 In this post from March 11th 2014, we explored the undue complexities that SI9 brings to many legacy projects of the celtic tiger years. Local Authorities may find out pretty soon that public housing/ghost estate projects may encounter similar problems to those that generated the SI.105 […]

Funny Friday | Open Letter to Minister Kelly

 Lester Naughton MRIAI The BRegs Blog received the following open letter to the recently appointed Minister for the Environment, Alan Kelly T.D. from a Galway based architect. We have titled it ‘Funny Friday’ even though the issue is very serious. At this stage with S.I. 9 we all need a bit of a laugh or […]

Revised RIAI SI.9 documentation- October 2014

The following email was issued to practice members of the representative body for architects (RIAI) on 24 October 2014, then to ordinary members on 28 October 2014. We believe these incorporate an independent legal review completed by Barratt Chapman (and others), senior partner in McCann Fitzgerald Solicitors in July 2014. This legal review was noted in the September RIAI […]

RIAI – posts to read for EGM

RIAI – posts to read for EGM In case you missed any, here is a list of posts relevant to the recent Extraordinary General Meeting of the representative body for architects (RIAI) held on the 12th August 2014. Minister Hogan’s departure- Does this mean somebody can now shout STOP? Architects are Revolting – Revoke BC(A)R S.I.9! Vivian Cummins MRIAI: Are […]

Engineers Journal | BCMS 9 months on

The following article appeared in Engineers Journal on 25th November 2014. It shows a typical inspection plan and notes the 12 most common mistakes made by users of the Building Control Management System (BCMS). Completion stage issues may not be fully visible at this point due to the low level of completions to date. Progress under the […]

RIAI Past Presidents Paper #2 | The Building Regulations and Certifiers’ Liability

BRegs Blog admin 21st November 2014 To mark the first 12 months of the BRegs Blog we are publishing a series of 7 information papers that were issued by past presidents of the representative body for architects (RIAI) towards the end of 2013. These papers contain informed analysis and are still very relevant to the current situation, nearly 9 months post implementation of […]

Completion Certificates for Multi-unit Housing

  3rd  December 2014 Completion Certificates for Multi-unit Housing The BRegs Blog received a request  for advice from a reader about providing completion certificates for multi-unit housing developments, started under one Commencement Notice. We put out a request for suggestions and we are very grateful for the many responses received and in particular those from Nigel Redmond (Building Surveyor) and Joe Byrne […]

‘Onerous’ Building Regulations must be amended – Minister Kelly

Here is a more detailed piece on the content of Minister Alan Kelly’s address to the Construction Industry Federation on 25th November from the The Engineers Journal. In the following article ‘Onerous’ Building Regulations must be amended – Minister Kelly from 27th November 2014, Environment Minister Alan Kelly has stated that he will propose amendments to the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations […]

BCMS Alert | Last day for Christmas Completion!

27th November 2014 The Building Control Management System (BCMS) has just published a notice on its website with regard to arrangements for the submission of Commencement/7-Day Notices over the Christmas and New Year period (Link). Extract: “BCMS will not accept the final submission of Notices during the period from midnight on [Sunday] 21stDecember 2014 to midnight […]

Iaosb letter to Minister Kelly – Revoke or Revise S.I.9

The following letter was sent to Minister Alan Kelly from the representative body for self-builders (IAOSB) on November 19th 2014. For link to IAOSB letter click here. _____________ Iaosb letter to Minister Kelly – Revoke or Revise S.I.9 19th November 2014 Dear Minister Kelly, Re: Building Control (Amendment) Regulation S.I.9 of 2014 I am writing to […]

Is there a regulation for thermal bridging condensation risk? | Part L

BRegs Blog on November 20th 2014 We received a recent query to the BReg Blog on 20th October 2014: “I have seen several posts on condensation risk analysis and Regulations compliance. Correct me if I am wrong but no REGULATION is concerned with condensation risk due to thermal bridging. Part L is concerned with limiting heat loss. Part F […]

ALERT | SI.9 Christmas Completion Countdown

  By Bregs Blog admin on 17th November 2014 ALERT | SI.9 Christmas Completion Countdown Today is the start date for lodging your prospective completion documents if your client plans to occupy a building or extension for Christmas. For occupation on Tuesday 23 December, you must lodge the final Completion Certificate on Monday 22 December and the Prospective Completion […]

Sunday Business Post | Karl Deeter “Building regulations – rules don’t deliver results”

This piece by Karl Deeter originally appeared in the Sunday Business Post on the 9th of November 2014. The pdf of the article is available here. For link to article online click here. Extract: _________ Building regulations – rules don’t deliver results When we look at the various property markets in Ireland we face a conundrum of […]

Engineers Ireland Journal | Jack Kavanagh- is SI.9 unjust to both engineer and society?

In this thought-provoking article in The Engineers Journal from 10th November 2014 “Building Control Certification: to sign or not to sign?”, author and past president of the representative bodies for Engineers (EI and ACEI), Jack Kavanagh looks at the negative aspects of BC(A)R SI.9 from an engineer’s perspective and wonders is SI.9 “…unjust to both engineer and […]

Results | S.I. 9 Assigned Certifier Survey

The BRegs Blog conducted a survey of its readers between 16th and 20th October 2014 in relation to their level of engagement and experience of undertaking the role of Assigned Certifier  (or not as the case may be) in accordance with S.I. 9. Thanks to all who took part in the survey. Once again we […]

Engineers Ireland Journal | Eoin O’Cofaigh FRIAI Ancillary Certificates + Self-certification

Eoin O’ Cofaigh FRIAI | Past President, Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland, (1998-1999) In the Engineers Ireland Journal published on 14th October 2014, Eoin O Cofaigh FRIAI writes that the self-certification system set up by the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations does not properly protect the consumer and the regulations will not prevent a […]

SCSI: SI9 is “positive change”

In this article from the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland “Positive change – Surveyors Journal” published in October 2014, author Andrew Ramsay takes a positive view of the recently implemented and widely criticised building regulation regulation SI.9. The Bregs Blog has recently written to the SCSI with a list of readers questions on SI.9. The SCSI however, remain unwilling to answer these […]

SCSI | “Highly unlikely Priory Hall would happen in Britain”- Look Back 4

SCSI | “Highly unlikely Priory Hall would happen in Britain”- Look Back 4 In following article from the Examiner in 2011 ‘Highly unlikely’ Priory Hall would happen in Britain, the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland (SCSI) comment on SI.9, formerly SI.80. The SCSI clearly highlight the main defect in the old Irish system of building control […]

BCMS: My First Validation | Mark Stephens MRIAI

Mark Stephens MRIAI I have written two previous posts for the BRegs Blog on the Building Control Management System (BCMS).  These posts were: 1. A Quickstart Guide 2. BCMS – an update Since writing these I have lodged my first successful Commencement Notice with the BCMS for a project that falls under S.I. No.9 of 2014. The […]

S.I.9 : Is the scene set for another Priory Hall?

The following opinion piece was originally submitted to the blog as a comment on 6th September 2014 and has been re-formatted. In the Dáil on October 1st 2013 Enda Kenny said: “I do not believe, however, that every single developer or contractor should be branded in the same way as those who put together Priory Hall. It is […]

10 ‘must-read’ posts for Certifiers | S.I.9

By Bregs Blog on 26th September 2014 Following readers’ requests we have assembled a number of ‘must read’ posts for those approved professionals who have to implement S.I.9 legislation. The first seven of these are critiques of recent industry draft documentation issued by the RIAI, the representative body for architects. As these documents are described as still […]

RIAI meet Minister Alan Kelly | “mind the gap”

by Bregs Blog admin team on 26th September 2014 Over the past six months the BRegs Blog has catalogued a multitude of implementation issues and concerns of self-builders, legal advisors and consumers since the implementation of S.I.9 in March 2014. Of particular focus has been the consensus view, as expressed by RIAI architects and architectural technologists, that […]

SCSI “A Bad Act”| S.I.9

SCSI “A Bad Act”| S.I.9  As a contrast to yesterday’s pro-S.I. 9 piece from Engineers Ireland the following article was posted by the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland (SCSI) in the Surveyor’s Journal from Summer 2012. In it,  Kevin Hollingsworth, outlined deficiencies in proposed changes to building control legislation. The issues outlined in the […]

“Dangling Participles” and why all extensions may now require compliance with S.I.9: 2014

The following opinion piece was submitted on 16th September 2014 by Nigel Redmond, a Registered Building Surveyor. It is a follow-up comment on a previous post “ALERT | Owners may need Certifiers on porch extensions?“. Concerns continue to be raised about possible ambiguities in the wording of S.I. 9 and their implications for floor area calculations. […]

Engineers Ireland Journal | S.I.9 “is an opportunity to enhance the reputation of the building sector”

After many unsuccessful ‘shout outs’ for pro-S.I. 9 articles to post over the past ten months the BRegs Blog has, at last, uncovered a relatively pro-S.I. 9 piece published on 15th September 2014 on the Engineers Ireland Journal’s website. The piece was written by Cormac Bradley, who with two others, represented Engineers Ireland in the […]

Practical post 26: Design changes on site?

Practical post 26: Design changes on site?  Our recent post from Building Control Management System  (Part 3 Link) says that: “Design changes are notified in the Annex to the Certificate of Compliance on Completion and may be notified to the Building Control Authority after submission of the valid Commencement Notice during the Construction process by […]

Practical post 25: Septic Tanks | Waste Water Treatment – BC(A)R SI.9

Practical post 25: Septic Tanks & Waste Water under the new Building Control Regulations Septic tanks come under Part H of the building regulations. Anyone constructing a new house (or extending by more than 40m2) after 1 March 2014 which has a septic tank or other waste water treatment systems will need to comply with new requirements. Part […]

RIAI S.I.9 CLIENT GUIDANCE NOTE – 1 Sep 2014

The representative body for architects (RIAI) issued the following updated Client guidance note on BC(A)R S.I.9 on 1st September 2014. THE BUILDING CONTROL (AMENDMENT) REGULATIONS, S.I. 9  CLIENT GUIDANCE NOTE  What are the Building Regulations?  The Building Regulations are a set of legal requirements for the design and construction of new buildings; and extensions, material […]

ALERT | Owners may need Certifiers on porch extensions?

The following post was written by the Breg Blog team on 8th September. Following recent correspondence received from readers on the issue of S.I.9 exemptions for minor works and invalidated short form commencement notices, we urgently call on our readers in the professional bodies and Local Authorities for clarification. More than 6 months after the implementation of S.I9, it would appear that […]

SI9 Schedule of duties for Certifiers

SI.9 Schedule of duties for Certifiers – do we need to re-evaluate costs? Following on from comments received on our “SI.9 costs for a typical house” piece, we have compiled the following ‘schedule of duties for SI.9’. This incorporates inputs from from a number of specialist Design Certifiers (DC) and Assigned Certifiers (AC) on the new duties required […]

New consumer protections for…spark plugs, not houses!

The following opinion piece was submitted by a registered architect on 25th August 2014. Breg blog notes shown in [ ]. New consumer protections for…spark plugs, not houses! Interesting to see new proposals for enhancing consumer rights for purchase of goods (see pdf here)- great to have if you purchase faulty spark plugs for your […]

Consequence Classes – What are they?

The following opinion piece by Seán Breen, Chartered Engineer, was received on 29th August 2014. Consequence Classes – What are they?  Image is credited to The Daily Telegraph, 1968. Some may have noticed on the BCMS that the project information requires confirmation of consequence class (or building class as it used to be known). Unless you […]

SI.9 and Part L | Specialist ancillary certifiers Part 2

The following opinion piece was submitted by registered architect and Passivhaus Designer Mark Stephens on August 27th 2014 and is a continuation of the post ‘SI.9 and Part L | Are specialist ancillary certifiers needed? Part 1’ A critical aspect of heat loss in a building are through ‘Thermal Bridges’: A thermal (or cold) bridge is where heat […]

SI.9 and Part L | Are specialist ancillary certifiers needed? Part 1

The following opinion piece was submitted by registered architect and Passivhaus Designer Mark Stephens on August 27th 2014. I have recently submitted my first Commencement Notice under S.I.9 for a new house in Co. Mayo. The following opinion piece concerns ensuring compliance with Part L of the Building Regulations: The only way numerically (currently) to assess […]

Any sign of a Commencement Notice for Priory Hall?

The following opinion piece was posted by BReg Blog Admin. Team on August 26th 2014. Any sign of a Commencement Notice for the material alterations? Work on fixing the Priory Hall apartment development looks like it started this summer. The CIF and others have been very active on Twitter trying to find out whether work has […]

BCMS Q+A: Part 3 | Process Issues

This is the third of three posts on the BCMS Question + Answer series. On 7th August 2014 the BRegs Blog posed a series of questions to the Building Control Management System (Link:). These were an edited compilation of questions that we received from our readers. The idea was that it would make for an […]

BCMS Q+A: Part 1 | General Issues

On 7th August 2014 the BRegs Blog posed a series of questions to the Building Control Management System (Link:). These were an edited compilation of questions that we received from our readers. The idea was that it would make for an efficient use of the BCMS resources if they replied to us in one email […]

Friday Follow | Eoin O’Cofaigh FRIAI

 Eoin O’Cofaigh FRIAI On Wednesday 13th August the BRegs Blog pulled a report on the RIAI EGM held the previous evening as it was felt that reporting attributed quotations without permission might impact on the openness of future debates at any similar EGM. The BRegs Blog Admin. Team are still considering the issue and whether […]

RIAI EGM : Seven issues for architects to consider

RIAI EGM : 7 issues for architects to consider We look at some of the issues noted in the recent resolution for an EGM in the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI) the representative body for architects. This was called for by members and is scheduled for Tuesday 12th August 2014. Here are some […]

BCMS: Open Letter

  Further to the BRegs Blog request (Link here:) for questions to submit to the Building Control Management System (BCMS) we sent the Open Letter below to the BCMS Senior Engineer at Fingal Co. Council who had very kindly offered to try and answer questions on the system. We will circulate any response received as […]

RIAI – EGM: Future BC(A)R Policy – Tuesday 12th August 2014

In one week’s time, on Tuesday 12th August 2014, the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI) will host an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) to debate a resolution calling for the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations, introduced in March of this year, to be revoked and replaced with a system which better protects the consumer […]

Public Affairs Ireland Journal: BC(A)R SI.9- pro’s and cons.

In this interesting article in “Public Affairs Ireland Journal” from July 2014, two opposing perspectives on the new Regulations are discussed. In “Two sides of the coin” Building Control (Amendment) Regulation 2014” solicitors Jarleth Heneghan and Cassandra Byrne say the new regulations introduced in March 2014 will lead to better quality buildings and value for the […]