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When developing property in Australia, there’s a lot to think about. You have to understand what you can and cannot build based on zoning, local rules and regulations, building standards, and certificates and approvals that need to be granted. One of these certificates is the Complying Development Certificate. But what is a Complying Development Certificate? Also known as a CDC, this certificate is issued once it has been established that certain development standards have been met. There are various benefits to obtaining a CDC, so let’s discuss it further.

What Is a CDC in Property Development?

Similar to development approval, a Complying Development Certificate gives you consent to build your proposed development. It is a code-based assessment which streamlines the process of obtaining development approval by combining building and planning approvals into one certificate. Where applicable, getting a CDC is preferable to development approval because the red tape is reduced by eliminating potential neighbour objections and involvement of the council, ensuring a faster approval process.

A Complying Development Certificate is issued based on adherence to regulations and codes set out by the relevant state or territory, as well as the Building Code of Australia, Local Environment Plans, and State Environment Planning Policy. To acquire a CDC, you must submit documents such as floor plans, engineering drawings, and site plans to a certifier.

Eligibility for a Complying Development Certificate

Not all projects are eligible for a CDC. Only smaller-scale developments and projects qualify for this certificate. The process was introduced to save developers time, and money that would otherwise have been spent trying to obtain development approval. Which can take up to three months. Getting a CDC typically takes six to eight weeks, so it’s easy to see why it is the preferred option.

Projects which may be approved for a CDC:

  • Low-impact developments
  • Single and two-story homes
  • Granny flats
  • Pergola
  • Residential sheds
  • Minor renovations
  • Decks
  • Swimming pools
  • Patios
  • Carports and garages
  • Commercial building alterations and additions
  • Establishing a home-based business
  • Shopfitting
  • Demolition of a building
  • Strata subdivision
  • Small-scale commercial, industrial, and residential developments


The Benefits of a Complying Development Certificate

Owners and developers who comply with the specified guidelines and standards can apply for a Complying Development Certificate. In addition to saving developers time, CDCs also contribute to reducing the regulatory compliance costs normally associated with development projects. Not forgetting that CDCs can reduce the risk of legal and compliance issues at a later stage. However, you shouldn’t expect any leniency with regards to the specific requirements or limitations imposed through restrictions.

With a CDC, certain types of buildings and construction projects can be approved quickly and efficiently using the correct documentation and the relevant building standards. Archistar’s property development platform incorporates planning rules from more than 25,000 sources. Researched, sorted, and consolidated, you can easily see the relevant rules on every property or site you select. They also influence the generative design engine, so any designs automatically generated by Archistar already account for planning rules and restrictions.

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