What Qualifications Do You Need To Be A Builder

Eager to be a licensed builder? The path ahead is long, but you can refer to the qualification list here, to know what you need to achieve your dreams.

A builder coordinates, oversees, and works on the construction, renovations, and repairs of various commercial or residential buildings in the construction industry. Builders must often manage complete construction projects while complying with specific safety regulations. Their tasks include organising and interpreting plans to meet client expectations and the rules of the national construction codes.

Builders are also tasked with providing the construction quote to the clients and submitting these plans to local council bodies. Once construction begins, they must coordinate with building and construction contractors like carpenters, local pool builders, and plumbers while handling some building and construction work independently.

Long story short, being a builder sounds like a complex job involving construction project management and construction management, and you might wonder what qualifications are required to be a builder in the building and construction industry.

To work as a qualified builder overseeing construction projects, one typically needs a Certificate IV in Building and Construction or equivalent qualification. This covers construction materials, workplace safety, contractor management, and other vital aspects of the building and construction workplace and processes.

Qualifications For Builders

To become a builder, one must obtain Certificate IV in Building and Construction. This test of competency determines which candidates are fit to become licensed builders. In addition, some additional certificates are needed.

Any aspiring builder has to get any one of these -

  1. A current license for bricklaying and contract work or a Supervisor Certificate
  2. A diploma in Building and Construction
  3. A bachelor’s degree in housing from any Australian University.

Alternatively, builders can obtain degrees in civil or structural engineering, housing, architecture, construction, construction economics and management, quantity surveying, and applied sciences in a building.

To obtain the relevant degrees, some papers need to be submitted. These include formal qualifications directly applicable to the license class for which aspiring builders apply. One must also submit the usual documents, such as three references, identity proof, and financial information, to prove they meet the standard requirements.

If a builder contracts under trading names, they must submit a copy of the Record of Registration from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). If they contract under partnerships, proof of the same must be shown.

Experience Needed For Builders

To become a builder and obtain a builder’s licence, you’d need at least two years of relevant industry experience, which can be gained in the scope of work that ties in with the class of license you wish to apply for. However, some also prefer to gain it through other work. But, in this case, the license commission must be adequately satisfied that this matches the scope of work relevant to the license class.

Those who wish to be builders can perform various tasks to gain two years of experience. This includes building on a Class 1 or Class 10 per the building code. You might even work on low-rise building projects ranging from Class 2 to 9, but in this case, the floor area must not exceed 2,000 square meters, and the construction can’t be Types A or B involving complex structural engineering.

If you perform non-structural work on a building, that also works in your favour. In such cases, the building’s class or total floor area doesn’t matter either. Aspiring builders can also try to create specifications and plans if these are for the licensee’s personal use or will be used by the licensee in the building work they’ll carry out as an owner builder.

Obtaining a builder’s licence typically requires nationally recognised training in areas like building, construction or civil engineering, along with the mandated relevant industry experience working on construction sites under qualified supervision.

Conditions of Builder Experience

While getting work experience is simple (since builders are in high demand in the construction sector), specific conditions must be met for the experience to be considered valid while applying for a license. Firstly, whether you are a subcontractor or a team member, the job has to be paid by a construction company. Any unpaid work isn’t counted as experience and doesn’t help the application process.

An aspirant can gain more than two years of experience in one chunk. They are allowed to have a few months of gap periods. But, from the date of application, the aspiring builders get ten years to complete a full two years of work experience in the construction process while adhering to strict safety regulations.

Usually, licensed builders provide references that count as work experience. Said individuals must possess either the Qualified Supervisor Certificate or an Individual Contractor Licence in the application process. Again, these must be in the same scope of work as the license class you apply for.

To enter the building industry as a construction worker, one must complete a Certificate III qualification from a registered training organisation. This provides the foundational skills to work safely and productively on construction sites.

Final Words

It becomes clear that to try to be a builder, you must undergo an arduous process. Much work experience is required, and the commission in charge of licenses thoroughly vets the applications. The validity of the experience is tested, and then the qualifications of the candidates are considered.

Since a builder has a lot of responsibility towards society and public safety, it is only fair that the most competent candidates become licensed builders. After all, professional builders are well-respected and bring in a commendable salary annually.

If you follow the simple steps outlined in this brief guide, you can achieve your dream of being a builder, too - with hard work and determination!

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