Do I need a DA?

A Development Application (DA) is a formal request to carry out a proposed development. DAs provide a way for Council to ensure our local government area (LGA) grows in a sustainable and safe manner. 

Selecting an appropriate site

Before you think about the DA process or other paths for approval, you should look at the land on which you wish to build or develop and find out what the land can or can’t be used for. Doing this early could avoid a lot of headaches later.

To help you with this process, we have developed a ‘Selecting a Site’ fact sheet with advice you should think about when selecting a site. It’s important to look at this information before investing any money.

You can also visit the NSW Planning Portal, which will provide specific property details.


Choosing the right development path

Not all development requires a DA. We class some low impact development as either ‘exempt’ or ‘complying’ development – any development that fits this description can follow a different path for approval.

The system of exempt and complying development avoids more straightforward proposals getting caught in the system. This system is controlled by State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 (Codes SEPP).

If your proposal can be considered under the Codes SEPP, you could save a lot of time and money. You will only need to lodge a DA if you find that your development can’t be considered under the Codes SEPP. View the ‘Do I need a DA?’ fact sheet to find out more.


What is exempt and Complying Development?

Exempt development is low impact development that meets standards set out in the Codes SEPP. Exempt development does not need planning or construction approval. As long as the proposed development meets the standards identified in the Codes SEPP approval is not needed.

Complying development combines planning and construction approval for any development that meets pre-determined development standards outlined in the Codes SEPP. Either a Council certifier or a private certifier will need to assess whether your proposal is complying development and, if it is, will issue a complying development certificate (CDC).