As of May 1, 2023, NCC 2022 has officially been adopted by the states and territories. The Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) says this marks one of the biggest changes to an edition of the National Construction Code (NCC) since the Building Codes of Australia and the Plumbing Code of Australia were combined in 2011.
Headline changes include the lifting of the minimum energy efficiency requirements for new homes from 6 to 7 NatHERS stars, and a new annual energy-use budget applicable to major appliances such as space conditioning, hot water, lighting, pool and spa pumps, offset by any onsite renewable energy generation.
Other significant updates include a new consistent volume structure for the NCC and a new housing provisions standard. There are also many changes in specific areas such as early childhood centres, fire safety of external walls, waterproofing, weatherproofing, falls to floor waste, number of exits, quantification of performance, plumbing, and referenced standards.
Although the new code is now in place, transitional arrangements are in place for the following specific requirements:
- New livable housing requirements commence October 1, 2023
- New energy efficiency and condensation mitigation requirements commence October 1, 2023
- New lead-free plumbing product requirements commence September 1, 2025.
A full breakdown of the transition plan for each state and territory is available at the ABCB website.
The ABCB is encouraging users to visit the NCC Online website, where several changes have been made to make accessing the code faster and easier. Users no longer need to log in or register to access the NCC, but the ABCB still recommends registration to stay connected with the latest news.
To help users navigate NCC 2022, the ABCB has also developed a set of resources.
Photo by Evan White