Subdivision is a great way to add value to your property with limited risk. The subdivision process has 3 basic stages – the time to completion ranges between 6 to 9 months. This is, of course dependent on the scale of the subdivision and extent of works required.

Stage 1 – Council Applications
First Step in the process is to talk to a planner who can quickly ascertain if the property can be subdivided and the likelihood of success.
Second Step is to obtain a survey of the lot to locate any house, poles, pits, contours and trees or anything that will affect the subdivision. Allan Van Planning will organize this for you with a trusted and experience surveyor. The ‘detail survey’ forms the basis of the ‘proposal plan’ and engineering design for the application.
Third Step: A ‘development application’ for Reconfiguration of a Lot (i.e. subdivision) is then prepared and submitted to council for their consideration. Typically, a code assessable (i.e. compliant) application takes on average 3 to 4 months. Non-compliant (impact assessable) applications will take 4 to 6 months.
Applications which are eligible for the RiskSMART (fast-tracked) programs offered by some Councils have a target timeframe for assessment of 1 to 4 weeks. In any case, once council is satisfied that the plans don’t create any negative effects to the community, the environment and that the new sites will be serviced correctly, a development approval (DA) should be issued.
A DA has a currency period of 2 years, which can generally be extended. The approval is bound to the land, benefiting the landowners with a real potential for additional dwellings.

Stage 2 – Construction
Council will provide a number of conditions with the DA. These conditions will specify exactly what council requires from you (the developer), so that Council can continue to support your development. This stage will involve a detailed assessment of design(s), which need to be prepared by a civil engineer for items such as sewer main extensions or property connections, water connections and storm water management, as well as the coordination of services including electricity and NBN. Allan Van Planning works with several very good, efficient engineers. We can recommend one in your area.
Once the connection applications are submitted, approvals by Councils and different bodies (i.e. Energex, NBNco), take on-average anywhere from 1 to 3 months, depending on which statutory process they go through and how well the whole process is managed. When the Council approval is attained, it will specify exactly the construction methods, materials, processes and more which will need to be carried out for the compliant construction of the project.

Stage 3 – Plan Sealing
Once all required infrastructure has been completed and is in its correct place, a registered surveyor will prepare the ‘Survey Plan’ and apply for ‘Plan Sealing’ through the local Council. Plan sealing is the process where Council review all relevant conditions of the approvals issued, assesses the subdivision and ensures that all conditions have been satisfactorily complied with.
Once the plan is ‘sealed’, this allows the plan to be submitted to the titles office, also for the survey plan to become ‘registered’ and the new titles issued.
Upon registration and issuance of titles, settlement of the properties can take place.

Some lots may require minimum investment in infrastructure such as simple new sewer and water connections on existing mains and electricity and phone services. Others may require much more substantial upgrades such as footpaths, water or sewer mains to be extended and underground detention tanks.
The current maximum rate for infrastructure charges applicable under the Adopted Infrastructure Charges Regime (AICR) stands at $28,000 per additional lot – for a ‘1-into-2’ that’s a total of $28,000. This is in addition to the cost to construct the connections to the services.
An indicative budget estimate for the entire subdivision process including the infrastructure charges is generally in the range of $60,000 – $80,000 (not including demolition and or relocation of the existing dwelling). This figure is based on some general rules of thumb and a solid bit of experience.
Each subdivision requires its own detailed feasibility study involving input from planners, engineers & designers – as costs in some cases may well exceed the range described above.

List of items in the process:
| Town Planner
| Surveyor
| DA Application Fee
| Project Management
| Demolition / Relocation
| Demolition / Building Approval Permit
| Civil Engineer
| Operation Works / Compliance Assessment Fee
| Civil Connections (Sewer & Water)
| Infrastructure Charges
| Final Survey and Titles