Construction noise comes under different laws, depending on what type of construction it is. 

Constructing subdivisions, homes and apartments

The Environment Protection (Residential Noise) Regulations 2018 (the Regulations) applies to residential construction of all scales including: 

  • large-scale multi-storey residential apartments  
  • large-scale residential subdivisions 
  • individual houses or small unit developments 
  • home renovation and extension 
  • repair or maintenance of an existing residence. 

The Regulations prohibit noise from construction equipment, if a neighbouring resident can hear it in their home, on: 

  • weekdays – before 7 am and after 8 pm 
  • weekends – before 9 am and after 8 pm. 

Noise from residential construction may be unreasonable at any time if it’s too loud, continues too long or happens too often. These laws apply to: 

  • builders
  • homeowners 
  • tenants 
  • tradespeople.

Exemptions apply for some types of residential construction

Exemptions from the Regulations apply to some types of residential construction. One example is large multi-storey residential construction, more than four stories, in a non-residential zone. This has the same restrictions as commercial construction. For more information, see Civil construction, building and demolition guide (publication 1834).

Another example is land-preparation work for new subdivisions in designated growth areas. Or land-preparation work at the fringe of metropolitan Melbourne or rural centres. Here, activities can start from 7 am on Saturdays, with some restrictions on equipment used within a certain distance from homes. Once a road servicing a building lot is complete, normal work hours for residential construction on Saturday, from 9 am, apply. For more information, see Civil construction, building and demolition guide (publication 1834).

You can report residential construction noise to your local council. Many councils also have local laws under the Local Government Act 2020 for construction noise.

Constructing commercial and industrial buildings

While this type of construction noise isn’t directly regulated by EPA, we do provide guidance for minimising noise from these activities. The Civil construction, building and demolition guide (publication 1834) provides information about managing noise from constructing commercial buildings. For example, offices and industrial facilities. It also applies to demolition work on an existing commercial or industrial site intended for residential redevelopment. Many councils have local laws under the Local Government Act 2020.

Constructing major infrastructure projects

EPA also provides guidance for minimising construction noise from major infrastructure projects. These activities should comply with the Civil construction, building and demolition guide (publication 1834). Find out more about noise from major infrastructure projects.

Read more about construction noise

About construction noise

Construction noise: EPA’s role  

Report construction noise  

About roadworks and major infrastructure noise  

Noise guidance for business: Residential construction

Noise guidance for business: Commercial construction

Noise guidance for business: Land development 

Reviewed 15 January 2021