Drowning is the most common cause of preventable death for children under five years of age in Victoria. To reduce this incidence of drowning, government legislation requires all pools and spas to have safety barriers installed.
Please note: If you don’t comply with the regulations you risk the lives of family and friends as well as fines of up to $5000.
The Victorian Government has introduced new safety laws for owners of existing and proposed swimming pools and spas. The new laws include:
- Mandatory registration of swimming pools and spas including relocatable pools and spas erected for 3 or more consecutive days;
- Establishment of a swimming pool and spa register that council maintains;
- A new compliance regime to improve swimming pool and spa safety; and
- Requirement to lodge a certificate of pool and spa barrier compliance with your local council every 4 years.
Read the Pool and Spa Regulation fact sheet for more information.
Swimming Pool & Spa online applications
Existing swimming pool and spas constructed before 8 April 1991 require the installation of pool barriers in accordance with Part 9 of the Building Regulations 2018 and AS1926-1993.
We have a program for inspecting these properties to ensure the barriers have been installed correctly.
Any issues are identified and in collaboration with the property owners the work is rectified, re-inspected and a compliance certificate is issued.
Ensure that you have complying pool barriers in place, assessment on the compliance of the pool barriers must be undertaken by a Registered Building Inspector or Building Surveyor.
As of 1 December 2019, if you have an existing swimming pool and spa including a relocatable pool and/or spa erected for 3 or more consecutive days, you must register your swimming pool or spa with Council.
All new swimming pool and spas require a building permit prior to commencement of works. The permit will include the specification and construction details for a compliant pool barrier in accordance to AS1926.2012.
You must obtain a valid building permit before any work commences. Carefully plan the location of the pool to ensure that effective barriers can be installed and obtain a Relevant Building Surveyor final certificate prior to the pool being filled with water.
Further details on the requirements for new pool barriers can be found on the Victorian Building Authority website.
New pools and spas must be registered within 30 days from when you receive a certificate of final occupancy permit as referenced on your building permit.
Register your Swimming Pool or Spa
Already existing swimming pool and spa owners had until 1 November 2020 to register their pools or spas with their local Council.
New pools and spas completed after 1 November 2020 must be registered within 30 days from when you receive a certificate of final occupancy permit as referenced on your building permit.
Registering a swimming pool or spa will cost $80.20 if constructed prior to 1 November 2020 and this includes an information search cost for pools and spas constructed before 1 November 2020.
If constructed after the 1 November 2020, the cost will be $32.30 and $20.70 for the certificate of barrier compliance (CBC).
After you've applied to register your pool or spa, Council will place it on their register. Council must give notice in writing to you with information including:
- the date of construction of the swimming pool or spa
- the applicable barrier standard
- the date of the next pool barrier compliance certificate is required to be lodged with the council
Swimming Pool and Spa Barrier Inspections
Once your swimming pool is registered with Council, you can arrange an inspection to check your swimming pool safety barrier's are compliant. You'll need to arrange an inspection every 4 years. This determines if your barrier is compliant.
An inspection can only be carried out by:
- a Council registered building inspector
- a registered private building surveyor
- a registered private building inspector
You can find a registered building inspector or building surveyor by visiting Victorian Building Authority Website.
You must ensure that you have a complying pool barrier in place at all times.
For more information on the requirement please our Building Development and Compliance unit on 9249 4000 or visit the Victoria Building Authority website.
Lodging a Certificate of Pool and Spa Barrier Compliance
Depending on the date the pool or spa was constructed Council will decide when your certificate of compliance must be lodged. These are
- 1 June 2022, for a swimming pool or spa with a date of construction on or before 30 June 1994
- 1 June 2023 for a swimming pool or spa with a date of construction on or after 1 July 1994 until 30 April 2010
- 1 June 2024, for a swimming pool or spa with a date of construction on or after 1 May 2010 until 31 October 2020
- Within 30 days after you receive the occupancy permit or certificate of final inspection for the pool and spa constructed after 1 November 2020
Lodging a certificate of pool and spa barrier compliance costs $20.70. You must lodge your certificate within 30 days from the date of the certificate.
Following lodgement of a certificate of pool and spa barrier compliance, Council must give a notice in writing to the owner indicating:
- the date the certificate of pool and spa barrier compliance was lodged with the relevant council
- the date by which the next certificate of pool and spa barrier compliance is required to be lodged with the council
Lodging a Certificate of Pool and Spa Barrier Non-compliance
If the inspector determines that your safety barrier is not compliant, they can:
- immediately issue a certificate of barrier non-compliance; or
- issue you a written notice specifying:
- the matters which must be addressed to bring the pool barrier into compliance
- the period in which the barrier must be made compliant (within a maximum of 60 days)
- the date and time they intend to reinspect the barrier
After re-inspection, if the inspector determines that you barrier is compliant, they'll issue a certificate of barrier compliance, which you must then lodge with council.
If the barrier remains non-compliant, but the inspector is satisfied that progress has been made towards bringing the barrier into compliance, they may allow you an extra 7 days to rectify the barrier. Otherwise they'll issue a certificate of barrier non-compliance.
If an inspector issues a certificate of barrier non-compliance, the inspector must lodge it with the relevant council and provide the owner with a copy.
Council will send the owner a fine of $385 which must be paid by the due date specified in the notice.
If you demonstrate to the satisfaction of Council that
- a swimming pool or spa no longer exists; or
- is no longer capable of containing water to a depth of greater than 300 mm;
Council must remove the swimming pool from its register. After council removes the swimming pool or spa, Council will give you a notice stating;
- the information about the swimming pool or spa has been removed from the register; and
- you no longer need to lodge further certificates of pool and spa barrier compliance.