The Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) has given the industry free online access to the National Construction Code (NCC) 2015 beginning as of yesterday, as a preview to the 1 May adoption date.

This is the first time the code has been made available free of charge. Previously, almost $400 had to be forked out for access to the BCA guide and volumes.

The measure, which is expected to increase annual access from 12,000 to approximately 200,000 building practitioners across Australia, was welcomed by various industry groups, many of which have spent years advocating for free access.

“I am very pleased that after a number of years of calling for the National Construction Code (NCC) to be made available for free, it is now available online. We welcome this move by the Australian Building Codes Board to increase accessibility to the NCC,” said Australian Institute of Architects CEO, David Parken.

“Standards and provisions such as those provided in the NCC play an important role in helping to create a more sustainable built environment so it is timely that a national review of compliance (or non-compliance) with the energy efficiency requirements in the NCC has recently been undertaken.”

Insurance Council of Australia CEO Rob Whelan adds that the reform will improve compliance with the Code – an issue that has been widely discussed in the past – and potentially raise the construction standards for Australia’s building stock.

“Compliance with the NCC is always important, and is especially relevant in regions that are exposed to frequent and catastrophic natural hazards,” said Whelan.

“However, the industry believes the NCC could be strengthened to further improve resilience to natural hazards.”

The NCC is an initiative of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) developed to incorporate all on-site building and plumbing requirements into a single code. It sets the minimum requirements for the design, construction and performance of buildings throughout Australia, and its free access is expected to lift the quality of projects being developed.

To register for the free 2015 NCC, please visit