The thought of subdividing your property is exciting and full of promise but the subdivision planning process can be a bit of a minefield! So to help get you started we spoke to our Planning team and asked them to provide their top tips. Hot off the press here they are…
Subdivision planning tip #1
Before you start, go to the Council Unitary Plan maps and check out what zone you are in and what rules apply. https://unitaryplanmaps.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/upviewer/
There’s a good chance that your site has been upzoned and you can do lot more than you previously could! This is particularly true in the Mixed Housing Urban, Suburban and Terrace Housing and Apartment zones.
Subdivision planning tip #2
Back up your online search with a phone call to Council – Most Council service centres provide free advice on the phone (be prepared to hold for a while!) The duty planner will be able to provide more information about what you can and can’t do on your site and what you might need consent for. They will also be able to identify any hazards or restrictions on your site and if there is anything else you may need to be aware of.
Subdivision planning tip #3
The type of land development that is right for you will be dependent on the location of your site. If your site is in a rural area, think about vacant subdivision. On the other hand, if you have an urban site, then a build and subdivision development is probably more appealing as that will get you more dwellings on your site.
Subdivision planning tip #4
Pre-application meetings with Council are highly recommended. There are many nuances under the Auckland Unitary Plan that can be tricky (and at times costly) to navigate through. Early engagement with Council representatives can help reduce costs and alert landowners to potential issues. This is also a good time to get an experienced consultant on-board that can be present at the meeting also. Contact us if you would like assistance with a pre-application meeting.
Subdivision planning tip #5
Have a chat to your neighbours and see if anyone in the area has subdivided and their thoughts on the process. There may be some aspects relevant to your area that you weren’t aware of. Having good relationships with your neighbours can also help the subdivision process run smoothly if you need to negotiate things with them further down the track….like connecting drainage through their property!
Subdivision planning tip #6
Do your research! Take a look at what’s happening in your neighbourhood…are your neighbours building big standalone houses or terraced townhouses? This will give you an indication of what’s selling in the market, specifically in your area and help you decide whether you build a 4 bedroom mansion or a couple of modest 2 bedroom townhouses.
Subdivision planning tip #7
Know your costs. Be very aware of the overall costs of subdividing from the start – many landowners may initially think of the resource consent cost but this is only a small portion of the big picture.
Other costs to consider are:
- engineering compliance/works;
- provision of utilities;
- Auckland Transport consent;
- surveying and LINZ costs;
- legal costs;
- building consent costs (for private drainage);
- costs for accessways etc.
Need some help?
Thomas Consultants has a team of experienced and passionate Planners who would love to work with you on your subdivision project. For further subdivision planning tips or to kick start your land development contact us today.