Over the years, setting up a building would require you to visit a near city/town authorities for approval of the designs topped up with a fee that is charged per square meter of the area to be built.

According to the Ministry, these fees are meant to facilitate the review of the submitted designs, verification of applications for the building permits and inspection once the construction has commenced.

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Following recent collapse of buildings around Kampala and the surrounding areas attributed to failure of the responsible authorities to do their routine checks and corruption, The Ministry of works has now set up new fees for building plan approvals.

According to the Building Control (fees) Regulations 2020, which were gazetted on September 4, any structure, including a house, will be required to obtain an occupation permit before use.

According to the rates which this website obtained, cities, municipalities, town councils and districts, will have uniform rates which has not been the case before.

For instance, a building plan in Jinja or Gulu, which were granted city status this year, will be charged the same as those in Kampala.

This implies that for any building to be built in Budondo sub-county, now part of Jinja city, the owner will be charged the same like a building owner in Kololo, an upscale suburb in Kampala.

The new regulations will see each building permit expire in five years and once the building is not completed within that time, the entities will be required to renew the permit and pay again.

Under the new guidelines, every building will be required to have an occupation permit before it is used. Class C buildings, including grass-thatched houses, will have a flat rate of sh30,000.

However, to demolish a Class C building, it will attract sh2m in cities, sh1.5m in municipalities, sh1m in town councils and sh500,000 in the rest of the districts.

For classes A and B, an occupation permit will be charged at sh1,200 per square metre in cities, sh950 in municipalities, sh700 in town councils and sh500 in the rest of the district.

For classes A and B, an occupation permit will be charged at sh 1,200 per square meter in cities, sh950 in municipalities, sh700 in town councils and sh500 in the rest of the district.

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According to the Building Control (fees) Regulations of 2020, structures are categorized in three classes, each with different rates, according to location — city or municipality. The categories are Classes A, B, and C and they will be charged per square meter.

CLASS C: Also known as ‘minor building’, covers any structure of less than 30 square meters.

Flavia Bwire, the executive director of the National Building Review Board, which sets the rates, said Class C structures cover one-roomed houses, locally known as mizigo, kiosks, stalls for snacks and the small local restaurants. She added that Class C also covers grass-thatched houses in villages. Class C category, will attract sh500,000 in cities, sh300,000 in municipalities,  sh200,000  in town councils and sh30,000 at local government level.

CLASS B: This is any structure with more than 30 square metres and not more than 12 metres high, above the ground. Bwire said most residential homes, especially bungalows, fall under this category. In cities, Class B will attract sh1,700 for each square metre, sh1,300 in municipalities, sh1,000 in town councils and sh950 at district local governments, such as sub-counties.

CLASS B: This is any structure with more than 30 square metres and not more than 12 metres high, above the ground. Bwire said most residential homes, especially bungalows, fall under this category. In cities, Class B will attract sh1,700 for each square metre, sh1,300 in municipalities, sh1,000 in town councils and sh950 at district local governments, such as sub-counties.

CLASS A: This covers buildings more than 12 metres above the ground or those with high impact on the environment. This also covers any structures set up in protected areas, such as wetlands, forests, national parks and reserves, among others. It also includes any structures, such as homes and buildings, set up on the shores of the lake, river banks and beaches. It also covers storeyed buildings, including schools, commercial buildings and factories, among others.

Bwire explained that even buildings classified in A and B categories can fall under this category if they have an impact on the environment.

Class A building permits will be charged at sh2,200 per square metre in cities, sh1,700 in municipalities, sh1,300 in town councils and sh1,100 in sub-counties and district local governments.