NSW Secondary Residences Rules and Regulations

Are you in NSW and want to build a secondary residence or granny flat in your backyard? We have prepared the NSW Rules for a Secondary Dwelling for you. These rules are found in the Affordable Housing State Environment Planning Policy (SEPP).

What is the Affordable Rental Housing SEPP? The State Environmental Planning Policy (Affordable Rental Housing) 2009 (Affordable Housing SEPP) started in July 2009. The goal is to provide safe and secure accommodation in group homes and a wider range of people. The policy seeks to supply a comfortable and secured quality of homes to the tenured.

A granny flat or secondary residence is a self-contained extension of the family home that could be built separate from the house or attached to the house. In general, it is built on the same block of land with the principal house and is not on a separate lot.

Basic Rules and Requirements of the NSW Council that you should know:

  • The property must be located in residential zones.
  • The property must be a minimum of 450m2 in the area and the secondary residence to be no larger than 60m2
  • There will only be one house and one secondary residence on the lot
  • The lot is not subdivided
  • The property must have a minimum 12-meter width at the building line of the existing dwelling. If your property does not meet this requirement you are able to apply for an attached secondary residence.

Setback Requirements

  • 3m setback from the rear but it needs to be clarified what’s on the side boundary (could be an easement or access requirement)
  • 0.9m setback from the side boundaries.
  • 3m from any existing trees over 4m in height
  • 6m front setback but 7.5m if the property is a coastal block
  • 6m setback if near a road or parkland
  • These requirements will need to be confirmed by your local council.

Parking Space

There are no requirements under the policy to provide any additional parking for the secondary residence.

Larger Blocks

NSW council requirements change for properties that are larger than 900m2 so please check with your local council.

Next Steps

If you want to build a secondary residence, it is advisable that you discuss your plan with an architect, building designer and/or planning consultant who can assist you and help you find out the development permissible for your block. You may also contact your local council to get advice on zoning and planning issues.

For more information about the NSW Housing Plans, you may also visit https://www.planning.nsw.gov.au/Policy-and-Legislation/Housing/~/media/831147A8479B4C2C8979DB4945B46706.ashx

Please note these rules can change without notice to us and this blog might be our of date, therefore it is best to call your local council to get accurate advice for your location. 

We build secondary residences called The Pod. We are located in Canberra and we build in the surrounding regions. We are looking to expand and build in NSW, if you have any questions please contact us.

0403 843 763 | 1300 THE POD (1300 843 763)

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