Can a Granny Flat Fit on my Block?


There are many reasons why you might want a granny flat on your block from keeping aging parents at home, some privacy for older children, home office, rental income, ect. This list goes on. Whatever the reason the question that can dictate all this is can you fit a granny flat on your block. To answer this you’ll need to consider a few things

Firstly know what kind of block that you own. The three most common will be:


Residential block in a suburban zone

Low rise

Low population density

Dual occupancy on properties over 800m2

Not able to subdivide


Residential block in a suburban zone

Low rise 

Higher population density than RZ1

Closer to shops and other amenities

Developments on properties 700m2 and over


Residential block in a urban zone

Higher population density

Low rise

May be used for commercial/ employment purposes

2 stories with a max height of 9.5m

Possibility for multiple units. 

Once you’ve identified which type of zoning your block falls into than you have to examine your actual block for things like:

  •  access to the proposed site (this can affect things from getting materials and machinery in to build your granny flat to your granny flat being disability compliant)
  • Most secondary residences will require a separate carpark so you have to consider if you have room for one
  • Do you have any major trees near the proposed site? If so you’ll need to contact the appropriate people to see if it can be taken down or not. 

The next thing to consider is your boundaries on standard blocks you’ll be required to have: (note this information is for the ACT and each state may differ slightly)

  • 3 metre clearance from the rear boundary
  • 3 metre clearance from one side of the boundary and 1.5 metres from the other side. 
  •  6 metre setback from the front boundary

Any water catchments or parkland greater than 6 metres require a 4 metre clearance

You’ll also have to check with your state’s regulations as they do vary for instance the ACT requires a block with a minimum block size of 500m2 and NSW has a requirement of 450m2 as a minimum block size.

A secondary residence / granny flat must not exceed 50% of the plot ratio of the main residence. 

Secondary residences in RZ1 ,RZ2 and RZ3 should not exceed 2 stories with a max height of 8.5 meters. 

This is just a brief overview of what is required to build a granny flat and we at The Pod Canberra specialise in building secondary residence and can advise you what is possible and alternatives where applicable so don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about building a granny flat on your block. 1300 The Pod.

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