Builders Licences: A Step By Step Approach

Preparation and organisation are the keys to success when getting your builder’s licence. Like every other state in Australia, Victoria has its own set of standards and requirements that are regulated through the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) that you’ll need to meet before you can become a registered builder. Preparing well for each stage of the process will ensure you’ve covered all your bases and can demonstrate to assessors why you deserve a place on their registration list.


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Build the foundation for a successful trade career with the Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building). You’ll be one step closer to establishing your own business and preparing for the Building Practitioners Board registration. The course offers great flexibility to cater to your busy schedule, so you can work towards the qualification in an arrangement that suits you.

– Administered by a Registered Training Organisation (RTO 21583)

– Work towards your Builders Licence

Step 1: Application

The first step to getting your Builders Licence and becoming a registered builder is to complete the Domestic Builder Registration Form available through the VBA website. Before putting pen to paper, you’ll need to decide which category of licence you’re eligible and would like to apply for, there are three options:

  • Domestic Builder (Limited)
  • Domestic Builder (Unlimited)
  • Domestic Builder (Manager)

Once you’ve made this decision, you can go ahead and fill in the form to demonstrate to assessors that you have adequate training and experience to warrant registration in this category. You do not need a specific qualification to be eligible, but a Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building) will go a long way to prove the extent of your knowledge. Likewise, you do not require a certain number of years’ experience, but success instead depends on your ability to demonstrate adequate experience in each field. Most of this experience, if not all, must have been completed through full time employment and under the supervision of a registered practitioner.


Supporting documents are a vital part of your application. The type of documents you need to include will vary depending on the type of licence you’re applying for, but all of the necessary forms are available through the VBA website. If you attach any copies of documents, they must be certified as a true copy of the original.


You will be required to pay a fee when submitting your application, for the Domestic Builder (Limited) licence the amount required is $719.00. For the Domestic Builder (Unlimited) and Domestic Builder (Manager) licences the amount required is $905.00.

Step 2: Examination

Depending on the assessment of your application, you may be required to sit an examination. This open book exam will feature 53 multiple choice questions and possibly include an additional section requiring you to identify faults on building plans. This could test different aspects of your knowledge such as bracing, truss design or the layout of bearers and joists. You will need to achieve a mark of 70% or higher on both elements of the exam in order to move onto the next stage of the registration process.

Step 3: Interview

Based on your application, you might be asked to attend a face-to-face interview with an accredited competency assessor. This interview will last for 2 hours or more and require you to demonstrate your knowledge across a range of areas including legislation, building work management and building technology. To prepare it can be helpful to review relevant documents such as Australian Standards, OH & S principles and business planning components. You could also be asked to identify faults on more building plans.

Step 4: Insurance

If your assessor believes you have the appropriate knowledge and experience for registration, and plans to recommend you to the , you will be asked to provide proof that you’re covered by insurance. Domestic builders require Domestic Building Insurance which covers up to $300,000 of value to fix structural defects for 6 years and non-structural defects for two years. Insurers can provide you with a ‘Certificate of Eligibility to purchase domestic building insurance’ which you can use as evidence for the Building Practitioners Board.

Step 5: Verdict

After going through all these steps, all that’s left to do is wait for the Building Practitioners Board to return with their verdict. You might be asked to provide additional information during this time, so be sure to provide this in a timely manner. If you’ve prepared well, you should stand in good stead for an approval!

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