Secondary Dwellings Units


These guidelines will help those looking to get approval for:

  • a secondary dwelling on rural community title sites.
  • dual occupancies on rural community title sites.

The two stages to getting approval are: 

  1. Applying for a new development application to change the existing community title consent.
  2. Applying for a development application for a secondary dwelling or dual occupancy.

Stage 1 - Apply for a new development consent to change the community title

To do this, a new development application to change the community title consent must be made. 

The application is to remove the restrictions of a single dwelling per community title lot. It will also seek to authorise secondary dwellings or dual occupancies within private lots in the community.

If approved:

  1. We will issue a new development consent with conditions.
  2. Your Neighbourhood Management Statement will need to be amended to specify secondary dwellings or dual occupancies are now permitted within the community title.

A Modification application (s4.55) will not be accepted to make these changes. 

What to include in the development application

new site plan showing the potential location of the additional dwelling sites. 

Details about how you will address: 

  • Bushfire constraints 
  • Ecology and Biodiversity
  • Effluent Disposal
  • Updated Vegetation Management Plan 
  • Geotechnical and slope considerations
  • Suitability of access and internal roads
  • Draft Amended Neighbourhood Management statement.

Vegetation Management Plan

The updated Vegetation Management Plan must provide for:

  • 900 trees per additional dwelling or 
  • 500 trees per secondary dwelling. 

It should also include details about:

  • how successful the initial Vegetation Management Plan was.  
  • any rectification works like weed removal that has not been regularly maintained by the Community. 
  • where the new plantings or works will be sited.

Neighbourhood Management Statement

The Neighbourhood Management Statement may include other things such as:

  • How the extra dwellings will be used to provide more affordable housing for future residents.
  • Measures to restrict or prevent them being used for short term rental accommodation. 

All owners must consent to the changes

It is important that all owners of the community title reach a consensus on these matters before submitting development application. 

The development application must include written consent from all the owners within the Community Title.

You must upload with the development application:

For more information on owners consent please see the fact sheet Owners Consent to Lodge an Application(PDF, 171KB).

Consideration of impacts on Community Title

Extra housing will have an impact on:

  • Community assets such as roads.
  • Community land affected by an updated vegetation management plan.
  • Issues relating to payment of community charges and levies.

For example, changes to bushfire controls may result in the need for internal roads to be upgraded to satisfy the NSW Rural Fire Service.

The community needs to resolve who pays for upgrades. We are not able to adjudicate or make a decision on issues such as these.

Some existing community title developments are heavily constrained by:

  • bushfire hazards,
  • ecology 
  • biodiversity. 

Extra housing on these sites may not be appropriate, despite the new planning controls which permit it.

We recommend that you get independent planning advice before you begin to understand any issues. 

Stage 2 - Apply for a development application for a secondary dwelling or dual occupancy

Once you have been approved and complied with the conditions of your development consent to change the community title, you can submit a development application for a secondary dwelling or dual occupancy.

Follow these steps:

1. Apply for a development application to construct a secondary dwelling or dual occupancy on the individual lot.

2. Application assessed You will need to address the relevant parts within Byron Local Environment Plan and Development Control Plan including:

  • bushfire
  • on-site waste management
  • water supply and environmental impacts.

These may have been addressed in the Stage 1 application, they will need to be considered further for this application.

Download the Development Application Matrix(PDF, 377KB) for a list of documents you may need to submit an application for a secondary dwelling or dual occupancy.

3. Activate any required revegetation works identified within the amended Vegetation Management Plan for the additional dwelling.

More information and contact details

For more information contact the Development Support Officers: