Building consent applications are the latest Whanganui District Council service to go online.

Greg Hoobin, council building control team leader, said the current consent process was extremely reliant on a paper-based system and can be very time consuming.

"We're proud to be the first of our group of regional councils to develop an online application process for building consents. Digital communication has become crucial in any organisation and the demand from customers to deal with the council electronically is increasing.," Mr Hoobin said.

He said online applications will tailor the application to the customer's needs, streamlining the process and means council staff are better able to track applications.

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"It's crucial that our customers get used to this new process over the coming months. To help out, we will supply a dedicated person to help with the online applications and make a computer available at the council's Guyton St building to help with lodging applications," he said.

Mr Toobin said council will accept hard copy building consent applications until January 31 next year but after that only online applications will be possible. The online consent applications are available by visiting the Building Services page of www.whanganui.govt.nz and signing into RealMe®.

He said people can book an appointment with one of council's customer services team to find out how to lodge an application by phoning (06) 349 0001.