New pool safety legislation

New pool safety legislation came into effect on 1 January 2017.

The Building (Pools) Amendment Act 2016 repealed the Fencing of Swimming Pools Act 1987 and inserted provisions relating to residential pools in the Building Act 2004.

Key changes include:

  • residential swimming pools must be inspected every three years
  • safety covers will be able to be used as barriers for spa pools and hot tubs
  • territorial authorities will have better tools to enforce pool barrier requirements, including notices to fix and infringement notices.


The Amendment Act created new Building Code clause F9. The Schedule to the Fencing of Swimming Pools Act 1987 is the current Acceptable Solution for restricting access to residential pools. Consultation on new Acceptable Solutions for clause F9 closed on 16 December 2016. MBIE is currently considering the feedback received for this consultation and intends to publish new Acceptable Solutions in April 2017.

The Building (Pools) Regulations 2016 sets out the fees payable by independently qualified pool inspectors, and the certificate they will issue if a pool has compliant barriers.

The Building (Pool Manufacturers and Retailers) notice in the New Zealand Gazette sets out the requirements for notices that manufacturers and retailers must supply with pools from 1 September 2017.

You can read more about restricting access to residential pools on the Building Performance website.

Additional information