Reviewing/developing a scope of works

A scope of works outlines the individual items of work that need to be carried out to address the damage sustained as a result of a natural disaster event.

This brief, non-exhaustive guide is for anyone needing to develop or review a scope of works, which is intended to outline the individual items of work that need to be carried out to address the damage sustained to residential properties as a result of a natural disaster event. For more information, please see our Disclaimer. 


1. Before the scope is reviewed, consider any documents relied on to compile the scope you are reviewing.  Documents that may be available include:

a.       Structural engineering reports 

b.       Geotechnical engineering reports

c.        Reports/quotes from subcontractors

d.       Asbestos testing results

e.       Council property files 

Formatting your scope of works 

2. The format of your scope must match the scope you are reviewing. This allows for straightforward comparison between differing scopes and means any differences and the reasons are easily understood.  Where no scope of works exists, you should prepare this on an element by element, line by line basis. 

3. If making changes or adding elements that may have been missed, clearly identify these on your scope of works, identifying the repair method and quantities to carry out the work in a compliant manner to a trade standard. Be prepared to explain why you believe an element needs to be added or repair strategy altered, including how that item was damaged by the event. 

4. It is a good idea to have a notes column next to the line item to explain why the addition/change has been made for ease of reference.  For example, if piles need to be packed but in order to do so in a lawful and compliant manner, you also need to replace the bearer you should note why. 

5. Make sure consideration and allowances are made as required for the following where the work requires specialised inputs:

f.        Asbestos testing and removal

g.       Access 

h.       Enabling and consequential works

i.         Consents – building, resource and consent exemptions

j.         Geotechnical & Structural engineering fee’s  

K.       Services – septic sewer systems, underground services etc

k.       Electrical work/reporting

l.         P&G

m.     Margin 

n.       Any other investigations/reports that may be required. 

o.       Clarifications/tags 

6. When compiling a scope of works you should have a good understanding of how Schedule 1, Section 42A and Section 112 of the Building Act 2004 apply to reinstatement work. 

7. Do not include any work that is not related to the damage caused by the event or is consequential to the repair.  If the homeowner wants additional works carried out these should be covered in a separate scope and costing.

Building contracts

8. You must have a written building contract for any work that costs more than $30,000.00.  It is recommended that you have a contract in place for work irrespective of the value to avoid any misunderstandings or disputes. 

Builders insurance

9. Builders should have liability insurance in place to protect them and their business from unforeseen accidental damage that causes another person – i.e., a client a loss.  It is recommended that all contractors talk to an experienced insurance broker about the types of insurance they should have in place. 

Contract works insurance

10.  Before building work commences a client’s insurer should be notified of any repairs to the property and a contract works policy will need to be purchased, to cover the contracted works.  Clients should seek advice from an experienced insurance broker to ensure the correct policies for their circumstances are obtained, this cost should be covered by your insurance policy.

Compliance with the Building Act 2004

11. All building work must comply with the Building Act 2004 and must be carried out by the appropriately licensed persons to an acceptable trade standard.  If in doubt, you should seek specialist advice. 

Further resources

BU666 Restoring a home after flood damage (2021)(external link) — BRANZ

Building work that doesn't need a building consent(external link) — Building Performance