Updated 1 March, 2023
As building certifiers, we understand that navigating the regulations and codes around building structures can be a daunting task for homeowners. One question that often arises is when do you need a siting variation for your structure?
In Queensland, the Development Code (QDC) parts MP1.1 and MP1.2 set out the requirements for building structures on a property. These requirements include setback distances from the boundaries of the property. However, there are certain situations where these setback distances may not be suitable for a homeowner’s specific building project. This is where a siting variation comes in.
What is a siting variation?
A siting variation is an application submitted to the council by a homeowner or their representative to apply for a reduction in the setback distances required by the QDC parts MP1.1 and MP1.2. The council will assess the application based on specific criteria and determine whether a siting variation can be granted. Rule of thumb is 6m from a front boundary and 1.5m from a side and rear boundary unless it is varied by a planning scheme.
So, when do you need a siting variation for your structure? Let’s break it down by the type of structure.
Sheds: If your shed is not longer than 9m in length, it can be built on the boundary without requiring a siting variation. However, if it is longer than 9m, then a siting variation will be required.
Decks and patios: If you are adding a deck to your property, or if you are building a deck as part of a new construction, it needs to be 1.5m from the side boundary. If you build within the 1.5m, then a siting variation will also be required.
Garages and carports: These structures need to be set back 6m from the front boundary, unless it is an open carport that meets the criteria and there is nowhere else on the site that it can be located. If they are built within this boundary setback, a siting variation is generally required.
Building extensions: If you are extending your building, you will need to comply with the setback distances required by the QDC. If you are unable to meet these requirements, you will need to apply for a siting variation.
Therefore, if you are building a shed, deck, carport, garage, building extension, patio, and are unsure if you need a siting variation, it is always best to consult with a building certifier. At our office, we are always available to discuss your building project and provide guidance on the regulations and codes that apply. We can assist with the siting variation application process, ensuring that you are meeting all requirements and can proceed with your project with confidence.
When do I need a siting variation for my structure? If it’s a shed and it’s not longer than 9m in length than it can be built on the boundary. Or if it’s longer than 9m in length than a siting variation will be required. With additions, if it’s a deck, or if it’s a habitable structure then typically it needs to be 1.5m from the side boundary. If you build within the 1.5m then a siting variation will also be required.
If you are building a shed, deck, carport, garage, building extension, patio, and unsure if you need a siting variation, call our office at any time to discuss your building project.