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Understanding the Strata Subdivision and Complying Development Process

Learn more about what the strata and complying development certification process

What is Strata Subdivision?

Strata subdivision is the subdivision of a building or buildings into smaller cubic spaces, generally units or town houses. Just as a large parcel of land can be subdivided into smaller lots, each with a legal title that can be bought and sold, similarly, a building can be subdivided in three dimensions to create a number of smaller strata lots, also with a separate legal title that can be bought and sold. Strata lots are generally represented as a unit or town house and can have associated car parking and storage areas included in their title.

What is a Strata Certificate?

A Strata Certificate finalises the strata subdivision of a building and certifies that all requirements of the strata subdivision process have been completed. A Strata Certificate also enables the strata plan, which is produced by a Registered Surveyor, to be lodged with NSW Land Registry Services for registration. Upon registration, the legal title is created for each strata lot in the subdivision. A Strata Certificate is issued under the Strata Schemes Development Act 2015.

An Accredited Certifier with a D1 category of accreditation can issue Strata Certificates for a strata plan, strata plan of subdivision, or a notice of conversion.

Prior to issuing the Strata Certificate, Certifiers must inspect the site to determine compliance of the building with the development and strata plans. They must also review a variety of documentation, including Council consent requirements relating to the strata subdivision and the strata plans.

What is a Complying Development Certificate?

Prior to a strata subdivision proceeding, development approval must be obtained for the subdivision. The development approval can be in the form of a development application approved by Council, or in the majority of circumstances, in the form of a Complying Development Certificate issued by an Accredited Certifier.

With the introduction of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) in 2008, development approval for the majority of strata subdivisions in NSW can be provided under the complying development pathway, with a Complying Development Certificate issued by an Accredited Certifier with B1 accreditation. This avoids the need for a separate development application for strata subdivision and has significantly improved turnaround times for processing strata subdivisions.

Complying Development Certificates state that a proposed development is complying development and (if carried out as specified) will comply with legislative requirements.

When issuing a Complying Development Certificate, the Certifier must inspect the site to determine compliance of the development with the requirements of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes). They must also review the draft strata plans, building plans, and Council planning certificate for the site to determine if strata subdivision is permissible by complying development on the site.

How can Barker Ryan Stewart assist?

Barker Ryan Stewart has Certifiers who hold accreditation to issue both Strata and Complying Development Certificates for strata titled subdivisions. Our certifiers have a wealth of experience and can significantly reduce your project and holding costs compared to using a traditional DA process through council. We do this by providing faster turnaround times and a more consistent assessment process.

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