bléuscape design

Q & A 101 – How close can I build to my site’s boundaries?

This week we are continuing on with our Q&A regarding some basic setback regulations for single detached housing. Please note that the below information is relevant to the Brisbane City Council region. The setbacks for your house site can vary depending on your council, and site overlays.  Feel free to write to us if you need to discuss anything further.

In established areas, the front setback (excluding eaves, awnings and stairs) is within 20% of the average setback of adjoining buildings, or is a minimum of 6 metres where the average front setback of the adjoining buildings fronting the same street is more than 6 metres.

In newly developing areas, the setback from a street frontage is a minimum of 3m. (Contact your concil to find out if your site is concidered to be within a new development)

The side boundary setback (existing boundaries with adjoining properties only), except for a wall built to the  boundary, is a minimum of:

  • 1.5m for a wall up to 4.5m high
  • 2m for a wall up to 7.5m high
  • 2m plus 0.5m for every 3m (or part of 3m) over 7.5m height for a wall over 7.5m high
  • less than 1.5m where:
  • the wall is no more than 3.5m high and no more than 15m long; and
  • no windows or openings are located within 0.9m of a side boundary with an adjoining property.

Boundary walls must be limited in dimensions and openings, to minimise the impact on neighbours.

A wall built to a side boundary has no windows or other openings to the side boundary and is limited to:

  • a maximum length of 15m
  • a maximum height of 3m,

except where the wall abuts a higher existing wall, and/or an existing built to boundary wall and/or it forms part of a common wall between dwellings that will be simultaneously constructed.

Note: Where a wall built to the boundary has a height less than 2m measured on the adjacent property, it can extend the full length of the boundary, less any front or rear boundary setback

Rear boundary setback (existing  boundaries with adjoining properties only) will be a minimum of 6m.

Note: Minimum setbacks do not apply to eaves and sun shading devices

Am I able to build closer than the required boundary setbacks?
A relaxation (siting variation) application would have to be lodged to Council for any building work that is constructed within the regulated setback boundaries.

To raise & build-in underneath my house, what should I be aware of?
You may need a wider side boundary clearance. The width of the side boundary clearances depends on the height of the building, so raising the building may mean a wider clearance is required.

For example, a low set home is generally less than 4.5m high & required a boundary clearance of 1.5m on a standard block. By raising it to a height between 4.5m & 7.5m a 2m side boundary clearance is required.

  • A ceiling height of 2.4m is required in bedrooms, lounge rooms & rumpus rooms.
  • Floor usually needs to be 225mm above ground
  • External walls must be water proof.




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