From the Building Standards Law, the first law I studied when I qualified as a first-class architect, I will share an overview of the procedures for constructing a building and what buildings are required to be approved.
If the size or location of the building to be constructed or extended falls into one of the following categories, it will be necessary to obtain a building permission from the local government with jurisdiction over the area or a designated confirmation and inspection body. Article 6 of the Building Standards Law stipulates that no construction work may be carried out without this permission.
(1) ” Buildings for specially designated uses” (e.g. condominiums, flats or houses consisting of a rental part and a home part) where the gross floor area of the parts used for such purposes exceeds 200 square metres
(2) Wooden buildings with three or more stories, or with a gross floor area of more than 500 square metres, or with a height of more than 13 metres, or with an eaves height of more than 9 metres
(3) Non-wooden buildings with more than two storeys or with a gross floor area of more than 200 square metres
In Japan, building permission must be obtained before any construction begins for any new building, extension, major repair or major redecoration of any of the buildings listed above, regardless of where it is located.
(4) Buildings in city planning areas, quasi-city planning areas (with some exceptions), or quasi-landscape areas (with some exceptions) specified in the Landscape Law, or in areas designated by the prefectural governor
In Japan, building permission must be obtained before any construction begins for any new building that meets the above conditions.
In any of the above cases, when the building is completed, it must be inspected and a Building Inspection Certificate must be issued. (An application for a completion inspection must be made within 4 days of completion of the building.)
A building constructed without a building permission, or without having undergone a completion inspection and having been issued with an Building Inspection Certificate, is an illegal construction. Please note that if you carry out building work without obtaining a building permission, even though it requires a building permission, you will be liable to imprisonment for up to one year or a fine of up to one million yen.