Shed and Garage FAQ

I live in NSW and want to build a single car garage, do I need to get a building permit?

Yes you do, the NSW SEPP does not allow garages to be exempt, even if you are under the 20 meters squared that is allowed for a Garden Shed.  Check the regulations here.

How much room do I need in a garage to hold a single car?

A standard Holden Commodore (VE) model is approximately 4.9 meters long and 1.8 meters wide.  If you want to pack the car in like a sardine, you would need approximately 5.5 meters as a minimum to allow for the lost space of the frame and to ensure that you could open the door on each side you would need approximately 3 meters.

The sensible space requirement for each standard car is 6 meters x 3 meters (18 square meters).  Taking this into consideration you would need a 6 meters x 6 meters (36 square meters)  for a double car garage.

I live in NSW and I want to use a shipping container for my shed, do I need to get a permit?

Yes you do.  Shipping containers are not exempt developments as far as the NSW SEPP is concerned.  Check the regulations here.

I live in NSW and I want to put up a 3 meter x 3 meter garden shed in my front yard do I need a permit?

Yes you do.  While you meet the size requirement for an exempt development under NSW SEPP, you can not put a shed in the front (road frontage) of any building without getting council approval.   Check the regulations here.

How much space do I need between the boundary of the next door neighbour and my new 3 meter x 3 meter garden shed (I live in NSW)?

If you build the garden shed at least 900mm from the next door’s lot, then you may be classified as an exempt development by the SEPP legislation.  Check the regulations here.

I am zoned Rural (RU3) in NSW and want to build a 45 meters squared shed, do I need a permit?

Providing that you meet all of the other criteria specified in the SEPP then you are below the 50 meters squared that classifies you as an example development.

I am building my second shed (NSW) and it is just a 3×3, do I need a permit?

I am afraid you do, the SEPP states that if there are more than 2 developments on the lot then you are not building an exempt development. Check the regulations here.

I want to put a bathroom and a toilet in my existing Class 10a shed, do I have to get Class 1 permits?

Your shed does not change classifications, as you are adding non-habitable rooms and this is not a problem under the Building Code of Australia’s definition of a “Class 10 a” building.  Take a look at the definition of Class 10a building and habitable rooms here.

Is a games room in a garage considered a habitable area in Australia?

While the BCA does not explicitly indicate that a games room is considered habitable area, it does specify a playroom as a habitable area.  The BCA makes it clear that a non-habitable area is one that is not occupied frequently and as a games room is, it is deemed a habitable room and your would need to reclassify your garage as a class 1 building.