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16-05 Changes for properties sold or leased with swimming pools

Date: Friday 11th March 2016
Category: Council Circular

Circular Details

Circular No 16-05 / 11 March 2016 / A453880

Previous Circular


Who should read this

Councillors / General Managers / Staff responsible for swimming pool inspection programs


Program Delivery Team / (02) 4428 4100 /

Action required

Councils to prepare for implementation

PDF Version of Circular 16-05


What’s changing

The Government is proposing to amend the Swimming Pools Regulation 2008, Conveyancing (Sale of Land) Regulation 2010 and Residential Tenancies Regulation 2010 to:

  1. Allow the vendor of a property (with a swimming pool) to transfer the requirement to have a compliant pool barrier to the purchaser. The transfer will be realised through the attachment of a ‘certificate of non-compliance’ to the contract for sale.
  2. Give the purchaser 90 days from the date of ownership transfer to address any issues of non-compliance in relation to the swimming pool barrier or be subject to current penalties. \
  3. Exempt properties with more than two (2) dwellings from the requirement to provide a compliant pool barrier on sale and lease as they are already regulated by mandatory three (3) year inspection programs.


Key points

  • All properties with a swimming pool or spa pool being sold or leased on or after 29 April 2016 will need a valid certificate of compliance, certificate of non-compliance or a relevant occupation certificate.
  • A ‘certificate of non-compliance’ will enable the seller to transfer the responsibility to obtain a certificate of compliance to the buyer.
  • This transfer will be realised through the attachment of a certificate of non-compliance to the contract for sale.
  • The buyer will have 90 days from the date of settlement to rectify defects listed in the certificate of non-compliance and obtain a certificate of compliance.
  • Councils are encouraged to liaise with solicitors, real estate agents, conveyancers and their community regarding the new requirements.
  • Councils should already have completed most mandatory inspections within their swimming pool inspection programs, including for pools on properties with more than 2 dwellings.
  • The NSW Government continues to work with Royal Life NSW to protect child safety around pools through the public "Be Pool Safe" campaign, which includes promotional resources for councils.
  • Detailed guidance and support material will be distributed shortly.


What this will mean for your council

  • Councils will need adequate resources in place to meet the expected increase in requests for swimming pool barrier compliance inspections.
  • Councils will be required to include in their annual report the number of inspections performed and the resultant number of certificates of compliance and certificates of non-compliance issued.
  • Councils will be able to issue a non-compliance penalty infringement notice if a purchaser has not obtained a certificate of compliance within 90 days.


Where to go for further information

 Visit the Office of Local Government’s website at


Tim Hurst

Acting Chief Executive

Office of Local Government


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