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Enclosing a verandah

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  1. #1
    2 kids, no time Wildman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

    Default Enclosing a verandah

    Hi All

    I want to enclose my verandah and convert it into a home office for a new business I am currently getting off the ground (sick of working for other people). Does anyone have any experience with councils/permits required for this?

    There are no structural changes being made, the current roof supports will simply have a stud walls and windows put in between them. There are no overlooking issues but it is visible from the street. The roof will be lined with insulation as there is none at the moment (the fibro eaves, probably asbestos, will simply be covered with a plasterboard ceiling with insulation and wont be disturbed). The resulting room will (for now) not be directly accessible from inside the house but only via a separate external door next to the existing front door. The verandah floor is concrete supported by brick walls so is more than strong enough for an office. Power and lighting can come straight through the weatherboard walls from the house living room (circuit capacity permitting). Windows will be double glazed and any stud walls will be properly insulated and there will also be flow through ventilation.

    Any opinions?
    Are councils likely to want permits for this? The resulting room will be 1400mmx4600mm.

    My glue tastes funny.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Gymea, NSW


    Ben, sounds pretty straightforward buildingwise.

    Don't know about Victoria, but in NSW if you are increasing the size of the enclosed area of a residence (and specifically enlcosing a verandah) you are supposed to get Council approval. Approval also required if you are 'adding' windows, which I suppose will also be needed in your new office. If you wanted to get pernickity there could also be an argument that a DA is required for the 'change of use' to a business purpose, particularly if this going to be your main source of income and your home will be the address of the registered office for the new biz.

    Sounds ridiculous to require approval for non structural works which do not increase the size or shape of the existing overall building footprint, but that's the way it is up here......hope Vic has a more practical approach

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Langwarrin, Melbourne


    Hi Ben

    Below is a cutting from the "Owner Builder Information and Education Kit" issued by the Building Commission Victoria. I think you have to at least ask the local council to make sure, otherwise if a permit is required and you dont get one, they could fine you and force you to rip it down.

    If your doing the work yourself and the value is over $12,000 you may also need to apply for a Certificate of Consent as an owner builder before you will be granted a permit.

    Also as an aside, be carefull declaring your addition as a home office for a new business. Having part of your home as a business asset can leave you open to Capital Gains Tax on the future sale of your home. Just something to be ware of.

    Good luck with the reno. and with your new business.

    You may need a planning permit, a building permit or both for your building project. Your building surveyor,
    building designer, architect or builder will be able to give you some initial advice about the permits required but
    it is essential to get independent advice before commencing your project. Your local council is the best place to
    advise whether or not you will need permits.
    Generally, a building permit is required for all signifi cant building work, which includes the construction and
    demolition or removal of a building. Any work to be carried out on or in connection with a building listed on the
    Heritage Register will require a building permit and may also require a permit under the
    Heritage Act 1995.
    The following table lists common types of building work and whether they are subject to a building permit.
    Please consult your municipal or private building surveyor regarding the technical provisions that apply.

    Common types of building work Building Permit required?
    Additions to a home or any other building Yes
    Structural alterations to a home or any other building Yes
    Removal of or alteration to a load bearing part of a building Yes
    Freestanding, fl oor area not exceeding 10m˛, no more than
    3m high, not constructed of masonry and located no further
    forward on the allotment than the associated building No
    Attached to another building Yes
    Setback less than the associated building Yes
    Demolition or removal of part or all of a building Yes
    Owner-builders must provide the relevant building surveyor
    with evidence that the demolisher has the necessary knowledge,
    experience, equipment and storage facilities to properly conduct
    the demolition.
    Construction of a side or boundary fence less than 2m high No
    Construction of a brick front fence more than 1.2m high Yes
    Construction of a timber front fence less than 1.5m high No
    Construction of a side or boundary fence more than 2m high Yes
    Construction of a fence that is more than 1m high,
    within 9m of the point of intersection of street alignment Yes
    Construction of a chain wire tennis court fence No
    Height more than
    – 3m above the highest point of a building (if attached to a building) Yes
    – 8m above the ground (if not attached to a building) Yes

    Construction of a pergola (unroofed) associated with
    a house, not exceeding 20m˛ in area, not more
    than 3m high and located no further forward on the
    allotment than the dwelling No
    Construction of a pergola (unroofed) associated with
    any other building Yes
    Constructed on or near site boundaries (any height) in
    order to maintain the stability of the adjoining property Yes
    Construction of a retaining wall 1m or more in height Yes
    Reblocking or restumping of an existing building Yes
    Replacing of corrugated iron roofi ng with concrete or
    terracotta roofi ng tiles Yes
    Replacement of corrugated iron roofi ng with ‘Colorbond’
    or other pre-fi nished sheeting No
    More than 1m above ground level within 3m of the street alignment Yes
    More than 8m above ground level, and more than 6m˛ in display
    area and more than 3m from the street allotment boundary Yes
    Erection of a shed less than 10m˛ in area, no more than 3m high,
    not constructed of masonry and located no further forward on
    the allotment than the associated building No
    Erection of a shed more than 10m˛ in area Yes
    Construction of an in-ground swimming pool/spa greater
    than 300mm in depth Yes
    Construction of a verandah attached to any building Yes
    Replacement of windows with similar type windows,
    where no structural alterations are required No
    Installation of “bay” or “corner” type windows where
    structural alterations are required Yes
    Installation of a wood heater (solid fuel burning appliance) No

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