COVID-19 update:

On Sunday 6 September 2020, the Premier announced Victoria’s COVID-19 roadmap to reopening. Many of the Stage 4 restrictions remain in place but there have been some slight changes. Find out more here.

Common planning questions

Do you have a question about planning or how the law relates to your personal circumstances? We can help.

On This Page

What do I need to know if my land is in a Special Building Overlay?

The Special Building Overlay identifies areas prone to overland flooding. The purpose of these overlays is to set appropriate conditions and floor levels to address any flood risk to developments, by ensuring that floor levels of a building are raised above the flood level and that structures such as buildings, sheds and fences, do not block the flow of water. These overlays require a planning permit for buildings and works.

To check if you are in an area covered by the Special Building Overlay, visit the VicPlan website.

If you need a Planning Permit, it's always best to talk to Melbourne Water before you apply because they will need to agree with what you want to do and sign off on your plans.

If the only reason you need a planning permit is because you are in the Special Building Overlay your application can be fast tracked through the VicSmart process. For more information visit the VicSmart page. 

How big is my block of land?

We can tell you roughly how big your block of land is, however to find out the accurate size for your land, you need to get a copy of the Certificate of Title, including the Plan of Subdivision. This includes the dimensions of the land, which you can use to calculate your overall lot size.

To get a full copy of your title online, please visit the Landata website or call Land Victoria on 8636 2010.

Do I need a planning permit for a home extension?

You may need a Planning Permit for a home or unit extension. There are many different factors that influence whether you need a permit including lot size, whether there are any older permits we’ve issued, the specific planning controls and site location.

To find out if you need a Planning Permit for your extension, check the zone and overlays that affect your property on the VicPlan website.

Do I need pre-application advice from Council?

Pre-application advice is highly recommended because it can help ensure that everything is in order before you apply for a planning permit. We will focus on understanding the outcome that you want to achieve and will:

  • give you feedback about your proposal including an outline of anything that needs to be improved to help you get a planning permit
  • confirm the information you need to submit with your planning application
  • let you know if the proposal is something that is unlikely to be approved and tell you why

Start your discussions with us early. We will provide advice in writing but you can also arrange to have a meeting with a planner as well.

For more information or to request pre-application advice, visit our Apply for pre-application advice page

There is a restrictive covenant on my title. How do I remove it?

The Planning Permit process is one way to apply to remove a restrictive covenant. We must notify all beneficiaries of the covenant. If one or more beneficiaries object to the covenant removal, we must refuse the application.

Can I get a copy of endorsed plans or a planning permit for someone elses property?

Yes, you can apply for these on our Search and copy page.

Important information: You can get a copy of a planning permit,but you can only get a copy of the endorsed plans if you’re the architect (who drew the plans) or if you own the copyright of the plans or if you have written consent from the architect or owner of the copyright.

If you can't get this consent, don't worry. You can still come and view the endorsed plans at the Planning Counter. Please call us on 9524 3333 to arrange a time to view the plans.

What if I think a development is illegal?

If you're concerned that a development is illegal, or doesn’t meet permit conditions or the plans you viewed, you can report a possible breach.

I want to build a Dependent Person's Unit (Granny Flat)?

To meet the definition of a dependent person's unit under the Glen Eira Planning Scheme, your proposal must:

  • be a movable building on the same lot as an existing dwelling
  • provide accommodation for a person dependent on a resident of the existing dwelling

Being movable requires the unit to be able to be moved from place to place but it does not include a caravan, tent or vehicle. A dependent person’s unit can only be provided where a person is dependent on a resident of the main dwelling because of medical, economic or social reasons and the structure must be removed from the land when it is no longer being used by a person dependent on the resident of the main dwelling.

If your proposal meets the above definition and it's the only dependent person's unit on the lot, it's likely that you won't need a Planning Permit.

Do I need a planning permit for advertising signage?

You may need a planning permit for advertising signage. It depends on the zoning, location and size of your proposed sign.

For more information, visit our Signage page.

Can I make changes to endorsed plans?

Yes, there are two ways in which you can make changes to endorsed plans. You can apply to amend previously endorsed plans:

  • Secondary Consent Amendment - minor modifications to endorsed plans that don't breach any conditions of the permit or what it allows. It does not allow for changes to be made to any of the wording of the conditions on the planning permit or the description of what the planning permit allows.
  • Section 72 Amendment - if you need to change the wording of a condition on the planning permit, what the planning permit allows you to do, or if you want to make more substantial changes to your endorsed plans. In some cases we will need to re-advertise your proposal

Do I need a planning permit to run a business from my home?

If you're running a business from home, you must meet the requirements in the Home Based Business (Clause 52.11) of the Glen Eira Planning Scheme. If you don't meet these requirements, your business may not be suitable to be run from home, or you may need a Planning Permit to operate.