City of Cockburn, PO Box 1215, Bibra Lake DC, Western Australia, 6965
Telephone: (08) 9411 3444

Smoke Alarms - Residential


New regulation under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions)Act 1960 take effect 1st October 2009 that require mains powered smoke alarms to be fitted to homes that are subject to sale, lease or hire. 

These requirements have been carried over into the Building Act 2011 and Div 3 of the Building Regulations 2012.

These new regulations only apply to the following types of buildings as defined by the Building Code of Australia:

  • Class 1a (single residential dwellings & group dwellings or the like),
  • Class 1b (Hostels/boarding house/guest house/bed & breakfast or the like <300m2).
  • Class 2 (Apartments & flats or the like)
  • Class 4 (Caretakers dwelling or the like)

Please refer to the Building Code of Australia for all specific details in regard to Classifications.

Homes for Sale from 1st October 2009

Vendors must ensure that hard-wired smoke alarms are installed by a qualified electrical contractor prior to the transfer of the property to the new owner. In the circumstances where the vendor fails to do so the new owner must install the compliant smoke alarms and may recover the cost in court.

(Penalty for non compliance $5000)

Rental properties from 1st October 2009

Landlords must ensure that hard-wired smoke alarms are installed by a qualified electrical contractor prior to the commencement of a new lease and must also ensure that the smoke alarms are maintained and be in working order at all times. Dwellings being made available for hire must also have hard-wired smoke alarms installed. Please Note! (The owner has 14 days after the new tenant takes over the dwelling to fit the smoke alarms.)

(Penalty for non compliance $5000)

Please Note that by 1st October 2011 all rental properties must be fitted with hard wired smoke alarms regardless.

Battery powered smoke alarms

In a case that would involve a sufficient problem of a structural nature or a sufficient problem of any other nature that the cause is not in the control of the owner, then the owner may apply to the local authority to install battery powered smoke alarms. The battery powered smoke alarms must have a 10 year battery life and the battery must not be removable. The fee for such an application shall not exceed $170. (An inspection may be required to determine if the alarms could be installed in a different location or whether battery powered alarms are definitely required.)

Class 1b dwellings (Hostel/Guest houses or Bed & Breakfast dwellings)

The new regulations only apply to the smoke alarms and do not require evacuation lights to be fitted to any dwellings that were not required to have these fitted when they were approved/constructed.

Infringement notices - Read more on Infringements

Under these new regulations the Local Authority may impose infringement notices of $750 or $1000 depending on the particular offence should a person not comply with their obligations under legislation.

For further information:

Fire & Emergency Services  of WA



Download these Documents:

Need further information?

Contact the Building Services
Tel: 9411 3444
Fax: 9411 3333

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