Industry news

New simplified housing code - 16 Jun, 2017

The General Housing Code is replaced with a new simplified Housing Code which sets out clear planning rules for complying development including one and two storey homes, renovations and extensions.


Planning rules for building a home under the fast-track complying development approval pathway have been simplified, making it easier, cheaper and faster for homeowners to get an approval.


The new Housing Code is clear and simple to understand, with easy to follow diagrams to make it easier for homeowners, certifiers and councils to understand the rules for complying development.


Under the new Code, development can be carried out as complying development where the relevant development standards in the State Policy are met. These standards have been developed following extensive consultation with the community, councils and industry, to ensure impacts on neighbours are minimised and include:

· maximum building height

· maximum gross floor area

· minimum setbacks from roads and boundaries

· minimum landscaped area

· privacy requirements


Benefits of the new Housing Code include:

· simple and clear planning rules, with easy to follow diagrams;

· saving time and money for home owners;

· cutting red tape;

· more certainty for certifiers and councils when assessing proposals; and

· faster and more efficient housing delivery.


Key changes that will impact developments that won't have the PCA appointed before 17th July 2017, are as follows:

· Gross floor area has a new definition that is closely in tune with the Standard Instrument LEP (eg. area is measured within the internal enclosing walls and only one car parking space is removed from the calculations)

· Gross floor area is now a ratio and as such is directly proportional to the size of the lot and now includes the area of any outbuildings (previously the area of an outbuilding was kept separate from the allowable area of the primary dwelling, secondary dwelling and detached studio).

· Landscape area is now a ratio and as such is directly proportional to the size of the lot.

·The introduction of the terms "detached buildings" and "attached buildings" with the allowance for "detached buildings" (such as a shed or cabana) to be built up against a side boundary for allotments less than 12.5metres at the front building line.

· Detached studios will now be allowed in areas with ANEF>25, as well as heritage conservation areas

· Detached studios will now be able to have a maximum building height of 4.5metres (currently only 3.6m)

· Front and boundary fences will reappear within the housing code (currently exempt development only)


To view the proposed changes that take affect Monday 17 July 2017, click on the following link-