Building permit for swimming pools and spas

A Building Permit is required for the construction of, and alterations to:

  • all swimming pools - in ground and above ground capable of holding water greater than 30cm deep
  • spas
  • associated safety barriers.

The Building Permit documentation must include:

  • a site plan showing location of swimming pool or spa, barriers, and any existing buildings on site
  • the type and location of the safety barriers, including fences, gates, doors, windows, latches, catches, self-closing devices and mesh screens
  • details of water reticulation and filtration equipment (manufacturer's specifications).

Note: From 1 May 2010 outdoor pools cannot be accessed directly from a building or adjoining property. 

Apply for a pool or spa building permit

Before you commence construction of any pool or spa, you must apply for a building permit.

Apply for a building permit

Safety barriers

After a Building Permit is issued, safety barriers must be completed within 6 months of building work commencing on the swimming pool or spa.

Prior to filling your pool for the first time you must have a compliant safety barrier in place. 

During construction

Compliant safety barriers must be in place during the construction of a pool.

During construction it is common for temporary fencing to be erected under the Building Permit and provided by your Builder to allow completion of the pool construction. Ensure you read the contract and discuss the details with your builder to understand what is included and what isn’t. 

The design and location of permanent fencing should be finalised during the design stage, prior to obtaining a building permit. Engage a registered Building Surveyor to advise on compliance issues for your barrier design. 

Temporary fencing

Temporary fencing is not acceptable as an ongoing or long-term barrier system for swimming pools and spas.

Safety barriers must be completed within 6 months of the commencement of pool or spa works. 

Construction compliance

Your Building Surveyor will require detailed documentation relating to the pool or spa structure as well as fencing details to demonstrate how the pool will be protected from access by young children in accordance with the Australian Standard. 

Your Building Surveyor will issue you with a Certificate of Final Inspection as evidence that the pool or spa and associated safety barriers comply with the Building Permit documentation.

Pool and spa registration and safety barrier certification

It is a requirement of the Victorian Building Regulations that any pool or spa capable of containing more than a depth of 30cm of water must:

  • be registered with Council. You can register online from 2 December 2019.
    New swimming pools or spas must be registered within 30 days of receiving the relevant Occupancy Permit or Certificate of Final Inspection.
  • have safety barriers that have been inspected and certified as compliant.

See more about pool and spa registration and certification of safety barriers


Once completed and approved, maintenance of the pool and safety barriers is the responsibility of the property owner. Safety barriers must be maintained in compliant working order at all times.