Thinking about your home improvement project and are reluctant or afraid to go to council? Can not blame you as most of councils have a reputation of complicating things. Fortunately you can now talk to your local backyard cabin builder first to find out whether you actually have to go to council.
For example, in NSW, with the introduction of State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008, many types of renovations and minor building projects don’t need approval from Council, are called exempt developments. Other states are catching up although limiting exempt developments to smaller size buildings.
For a bigger project such as new two story house, alterations or additions to an existing house, as long as the development complies with the set standards and criteria outlined in the Policy, accredited Certifier can issue a Complying Development Certificate within 10 days.
Overwhelming and complex planning system may be a thing of a past as Governments now aim to reduce merit based planning approvals. ‘The principal aim of exempt and complying development is to reduce red tape in the planning system and improve efficiency and consistency for assessing planning proposals that meet specific development standards.’
So go ahead – call your local builder first. Just make sure a builder has a reputation and experience in building type of projects you are looking for.
http://www.planning.nsw.gov.au/ [page is unpublished and no longer available, so link is removed at 26/09/2018]