There are two options for obtaining an approval to build your granny flat.

In any case, Granny Flat Leaders will handle the entire process on your behalf, so you need not worry if the following information seems a little overwhelming.

Depending on the area you are building in and your requirements, we will either apply for a CDC or DA to begin the construction of your dwelling.

In addition to obtaining a building approval which is either via DA/CC or CDC, there are other government authorities that require an approval.

This depends on the zone and which council area you will be building in, i.e. Sydney Water and Mines Subsidence Board (if you are in a Mines area). Compliance and fees payable can differ between each council.

CDC Complying Development

The State Government defines a granny flat as being “a secondary dwelling, self-contained accommodation within, attached or separate to an individual home.”

A council or accredited certifier can certify granny flats as complying development without the need for a development application, provided they meet specific standards in the State Environmental Planning Policy (Affordable Rental Housing) 2009.

Typically to build a granny flat as complying development it must be:

  • Established in conjunction with another dwelling (the principal dwelling),
  • On the same lot of land as the principal dwelling (and not an individual lot in a strata plan or community title scheme), and
  • May be within, attached to, or separate from the principal dwelling.

An application for a CDC (Complying Development Certificate) can be lodged with either a local council or a private accredited certifier. A CDC must be issued prior to building work commencing.

For more information on applying for a CDC click here.

DA Development Application

A Development Application is simply a proposed design which must be submitted for approval from the local council. Each application is assessed on its own merit and must comply with the local council's DCP (development control plan) which varies between areas depending on the “zone” classification.

Granny flats may be allowed in several residential zones. Councils determine if granny flats are permissible in the zones which include:

  • Zone R1 General Residential
  • Zone R2 Low Density Residential
  • Zone R4 High Density Residential
  • Zone R5 Large Lot Residential (via development application only
  • Equivalent zones for the council area.

After the DA has been assessed, you are then required to obtain a CC (Construction Certificate) which is a building approval. This can be obtained via council or a Private Certifier.