Building Numbers 

Discover McKern's specialised experience in the Building & Construction Industry. 

QBCC (Queensland)

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) is a statutory authority established under the Queensland Building Services Authority Act 1991.  Its charter is to regulate the building industry through the licensing of contractors, educate consumers about their rights and obligations, make contractors aware of their legal rights and responsibilities, handle disputes fairly and equitably, protect consumers against loss through statutory insurance, implement and enforce legislative reforms and where necessary, and prosecute persons not complying with the law. 

McKern assists clients with the preparation of the QBCC financial requirements for licensing and can provide advice in relation to applications, financial requirements, and annual requirements for the maintenance of your QBCC license, including completion of the Independent Review Report.

Home Warranty Insurance (NSW)

For building projects in NSW, the Home Building Act 1989 ensures builders and other trade contractors, when undertaking residential building work projects, obtain home warranty insurance prior to commencing work or receiving any payment (including a deposit) under a contract when the value of the work exceeds $20,000. 

McKern can assist our clients in requirements for builders and other trade contractors to obtain home warranty insurance, and provide advice relating to applying for a Certificate of Insurance, Eligibility, Premiums, Securities, and the Building Contract review program.

Internal Management

The McKern team can provide assistance with the internal management of your building operation, to ensure you're able to satisfy the regulations set down by the governing authorities listed above, as well as providing advice regarding budgets and expected profits.


Using the correct structure to carry out your building operation is very important for various reasons, including licensing requirements, asset protection, and flexibility when considering income distributions and income tax.  The McKern team is highly experienced in how to successfully structure your entities to ensure the best outcome for all of these considerations.

Building Numbers FAQs

How do I obtain a building license in Queensland?

To obtain a building license in Queensland you must apply for a license through the Queensland Building & Construction Commission (QBCC). The license application will include a lot of detail in relation to your experience and qualifications, and depending on the class of license you are applying for, various financial details.

McKern are able to assist with any building license applications, including those for contractors or business owners. Contact McKern to make an appointment. 

What do I do if my QBCC license is suspended?

The Queensland Building & Construction Commission is the government body responsible for managing building licensees in Queensland.  If your license has been suspended you are liable to be prosecuted if you continue to carry out any building works, including providing quotes, or signing new contracts.

The QBCC will suspend your licence if it is not renewed by the annual due date or if the financial information that has been provided is not satisfactory to maintain your current level of license. Negotiations can usually be made with the QBCC and once they have received updated information that satisfies the requirements, they can re-activate your license.

McKern has years of experience in dealing with the QBCC (formerly QBSA) for our clients, and can assist you to ensure that your licensing requirements are met. Contact McKern to make an appointment. 

How do I increase my turnover limits for QBCC?

There are various financial requirements that need to be satisfied in order to obtain a licence for a higher level of turnover.  Essentially, the level of turnover that you can be licensed for will depend on the strength and liquidity of your Balance Sheet. When you complete your annual renewal, you need to include your financial statement information, which allows the QBCC to determine what level of turnover you will be licensed for each year.

McKern can prepare interim financial statements as necessary, as well as prepare and lodge the renewal forms with QBCC each year. If you become concerned that your turnover may exceed your licence in any year, we recommend making an appointment to discuss your available options as soon as possible, prior to your QBCC renewal due date.

How do I obtain a building licence in New South Wales?

In order to obtain a building license in New South Wales, you must apply for a license through NSW Fair Trading (NSWFT). The license application will include a lot of detail in relation to your experience and qualifications, and depending on the class of license you are applying for, various financial details.

McKern are able to assist with any building license applications, including applications for contractors or business owners. Contact McKern for more information.  

Why do I need Home Warranty Insurance?

In NSW, any builder or tradesperson is required to obtain Home Warranty Insurance prior to taking any money (including a deposit) from a home owner under a Residential Building Contract. The Insurance is also required for any spec builders prior to any work starting on a property owned by the builder or by a Developer prior to entering into a sale contract for a property that has had building contractors work on it. Owner builders who sell the property within 6 years are also required to have this insurance.

The insurance is provided to give a set period of cover for loss caused by defective or incomplete work in the event of the death, disappearance or insolvency of the Contractor. 

Questions about Home Warranty Insurance? Contact McKern to arrange an appointment. 

How do I obtain Home Warranty insurance in NSW?

Since 1 July 2010, the NSW Self Insurance Corporation is the sole provider of Home Warranty Insurance. In order to apply for a policy, you will need to complete an application through your insurance broker. The application will be requires various information including but not limited to, Financial Statements, Tax Returns, Statement of Assets and Liabilities, Rate Notices for any properties included in Assets, and Current Contractor License details.

It's important to note the insurance will only be provided in the same name that is on the Contractors License. 

McKern can assist in the completion and lodgement of the application form, Contact McKern for an appointment. 

Do I need a new company to build in?

Building licences can be approved for various different entities, including sole traders, partnerships, trustees or companies. It is not a requirement for your building to be carried out by a company. However, there are many issues that should be taken in to consideration when deciding the structure of your business and investment entities. Asset protection, tax minimisation, small business CGT concessions and succession planning are just some of these.

Want to maximise the effectiveness of your structures? Contact McKern to discuss and review your details and situation prior to setting up any new structures. 

What do I need to do if I engage/employ a contractor?

There are many issues to be considered when employing a Contractor. The Australian Tax Office (ATO) and the State Revenue Offices differentiate between employees and contractors differently, for different matters.  It can be a very complex area, especially when it comes to payroll tax.

Some of the complexities include PAYG withholding and Voluntary Withholding Agreements, Superannuation, Workers Compensation Insurance, Payroll Tax, and ABN withholding.

Contact McKern for an appointment. We'll help you assess whether you are satisfying all of your obligations associated with the engagement of a contractor. 

How do I structure a property development?

A typical property development scenario involves a developer purchasing a property with a view to developing it for sale. The development can consist of work carried out to separate the property into separate titles for individual sale, or it can also include the erection of buildings either for sale, or to be maintained for rent and capital growth.

There are many issues to be considered when it comes to structuring a property development and it depends entirely on the individual circumstances. Some of the issues to consider include asset protection, tax minimisation, availability of small business CGT concessions, timing of completion, as well as any other projects being undertaken by the group. 

McKern can review your entire group before providing advice on the best structure for your particular development. Contact McKern to discuss your property development.