Temporary Homes

Council requirements for living in temporary accommodation whilst building a permanent residence

If you wish to live in a shed or caravan on your land while a dwelling house is being constructed on the land, or building works on your existing dwelling which make the dwelling temporarily unfit for occupation, you will need to apply to Council for an approval for a temporary home under Council's Subordinate Local Law No. 1.3 (Establishment or Occupation of a Temporary Home) 2011 (PDF 50.1KB)

If your land is in a residential area, you can apply to live in a shed as a temporary home.  

If your land is in a rural area, you can apply to live in a shed, caravan, mobile home, or other suitable structure.

Applying for an approval

  1. Before you can apply for an approval for a temporary home, you must first obtain a building approval for the dwelling being constructed on the land, or for the building works being undertaken on the existing dwelling. 

  2. Once a building approval has been obtained, complete an Application for Permission to Occupy Temporary Accommodation (PDF 847.2KB) form and submit back to Council at least 30 days prior to your intended use date to allow Council officers adequate time to make an assessment.

  3. Payment of the applicable fee is required before an assessing officer can be assigned to your application. Applicable fees are provided in Council’s Fees and Charges document.

  4. Provide additional supporting information, including:
  • Why you are applying for approval for a temporary home
  • Details of all the people who will be residing in the temporary home
  • Copy of the Development Permit for Building Work for Dwelling (class 1a) issued for the dwelling, or works on the dwelling
  • Drawings showing the proposed location, design, dimensions, and construction materials of the proposed temporary home
  • Details of how waste water from the temporary home will be disposed of (e.g. waste water from the toilet, kitchen, laundry, and bathing facilities)
  • Details of drinking water supply (a minimum 5000L water tank is required)
  • Written consent from the landowner if you are not the owner of the land

Terms & conditions of an approval for a temporary home 

An approval may be issued for a period of up to 18 months.

Council may extend the term of an approval to coincide with the expected completion date of the building works for the construction or renovation of the dwelling.

The approval for the temporary home will lapse on the date noted on the approval, the building approval for the dwelling lapsed, or when the dwelling or works on the dwelling are completed.

Conditions will be placed on any approval to achieve the following:

  • The temporary home does not affect the amenity and aesthetics of the area.
  • Toilet facilities are connected to the sewer or approved septic tank, or may be a chemical or composting type approved by Council.
  • An adequate drinking water supply is available.
  • Suitable hygiene and sanitation is provided.

The above information is provided within the Temporary Home Info Sheet (PDF 276.5KB).

For further information about applying to occupy a temporary home permit, contact Council’s Development Compliance Officers. For further information about what building or plumbing approvals you may require, contact Council’s Building or Plumbing Officers.

Please Note: This advice does not imply that an approval for a temporary home will be issued.  Each application will be assessed on its merits.  Occupation of a temporary home cannot commence until an approval for a temporary home has been issued by Council.  Caravans or mobile homes will not be approved as temporary accommodation in urban residential areas.  The above advice contains general conditions and information only.  Any approval will include specific conditions that are required to be met.

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