Does my new house or renovation need development approval?

Determining whether a new house or renovation will require a Development Approval (DA) from the local Council is a crucial step in residential property development and should be one of your first investigation to ensure your new home renovation or residential development runs smoothly.

The rules for obtaining Development Approval for building development, including for residential and commercial property developments, are complex and precise.

Is Development Approval Required?

The good news is that often building a new home, building renovations that extend an existing home or home renovations won’t require a Development Approval.

However, there are a range of different circumstances when a new home or home renovation will require a DA.

But this is not necessary the worst news a home renovator can hear. While in some cases obtaining a DA can add time to a home renovation project, in others it may be a simple case of making minor changes to the building design to comply with relevant building and planning rules for residential properties.

These requirements can be subtle, and it is always best to speak to a qualified town planning consultant before you commence your renovation or home design process to ensure you are complying with Council’s rules and regulations.

Taking Advantage of Self-Assessment

Many Councils, such as Brisbane City Council, allow houses subject to Development Approval to undertake a self-assessment property development process.

What does this mean to families building a new home or completing major home improvements or renovations?

Most houses and renovations do not need to submit their building plans to their local Council for approval, provided they comply with requirements set out in the local planning scheme.

Property designs often need to comply with a range of Council building codes. These codes govern a multitude of factors such as building height and building design through to environmental factors such as flooding and biodiversity.

Each Council has different rules when it comes to property and development.

In the Brisbane City Council area, common triggers for needing a DA include:

  • The building doesn’t comply with Council’s Dwelling House Code or Dwelling House (Small Lot) Code;
  • The building site is within a character precinct such as Council’s Traditional Building Character Overlay Code;
  • The building site is affected by some sort of constraint that requires assessment by Council.

Questions to Ask

The first step in determining if you need a Development Approval for your proposed new home or home renovation is to obtain all the relevant details of the property, such as:

  • The building site’s area and road frontage;
  • If there are any zoning issues that affect the building site;
  • Whether the building site is within a Neighbourhood Plan; and
  • Any constraints or overlays which affect the building site.

This information is essential to working out the specific rules that apply to your building site.

Speed Up The Development Approval Process With SiteFinder

Use a SiteFinder Site Report to quickly and accurately determine if your proposed building project will require a Development Approval.

By downloading a SiteFinder Site Report you can immediately see all the property information you need quickly and easily in one place, including all local Council rules applying to your searched property.

SiteFinder is the best way to instantly secure valuable real estate data. Trust SiteFinder’s powerful algorithm to identify the important property development characteristics of your searched property site, and then clearly display all the facts you need for your property feasibility report in a simple to understand yes / no format.

Think you need a Development Application?

Speak to a qualified town planning consultant about how you can avoid the time and costs involved in lodging a Development Application. An experienced and qualified town planner can suggest small but effective changes to your design that can save you both time and money.