Step-by-step process

Subdivision is the division of one lot into two or more lots and/or the amalgamation of several lots into one lot.

The subdivision process is lengthy, and involves the following steps:

  1. You (the owner of the land) or a licensed land surveyor (that you have engaged) must submit your subdivision application to the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) for consideration and determination. 
  2. The WAPC will refer your application to any affected/interested government agencies and utility providers for comment and recommended conditions. All subdivision applications that affect land within the City of Swan are referred by the WAPC to the City of Swan for comment and recommended conditions.
  3. The WAPC will have regard for comments and recommendations received from all government agencies and utility providers when making their final determination. If the WAPC approves your subdivision application, it will more than likely include subdivision conditions. It will also indicate what government agency/utility provider recommended each respective subdivision approval condition.  
  4. Upon receipt of your subdivision approval, you the applicant, will need to satisfy all of the subdivision conditions, which in most cases will involve carrying out various types of works on the subject property.  
  5. Once you have completed all the necessary works to satisfy all the subdivision approval conditions, you the applicant, are required to submit a subdivision clearance application with all of the relevant government agencies and utility providers who recommended the imposition of the subdivision conditions.  
  6. The government agencies/utility providers will approve your application for subdivision clearance once they are satisfied that you have met the subdivision conditions they recommended to the WAPC.   
  7. Upon receipt of all government agency/utility provider subdivision clearance approvals, you the applicant, are required to submit all the government agency/utility providers subdivision clearance approvals to the WAPC for final subdivision clearance approval.

Please note: An interim rates notice may be issued once your land has been subdivided.

Can I subdivide my property?

The zone of your property will affect which planning instruments the WAPC and the City use when undertaking an assessment of your subdivision application. The relevant planning instruments are referenced below under each respective zone grouping.

Residential Zones

The City of Swan's Local Planning Scheme No.17 map identifies the density code of all residential zoned land. The WAPC's Residential Design Codes (R-Codes) stipulate the minimum and average lot size for each residential density code. Therefore, the City's Scheme and the R-Codes are the key planning instrument which are used by the WAPC and the City to assess your subdivision application.

If your property has a dual density coding, it will also be assessed against the following clauses of the City's Local Planning Scheme No.17:

"5.2.4 Notwithstanding the provisions of the Residential Design Codes, within a dual coded area, when considering an application for approval of a residential development, or a residential built strata application, and when making recommendations to the Commission in respect of a subdivision for ‘Residential’ zoned land, within a dual coded area, the Council is to apply the base density code, but may increase the density in excess of the base code and up to the maximum of the highest code designated for the site after having regard to the provisions of Clause 5.2.5.

5.2.5 In a dual coded area, when considering an application for development approval or a built strata approval which involves more than two grouped dwellings or more than two multiple dwellings on a lot, or when making recommendations to the Commission in respect of a subdivision application for 'Residential’ zoned land that proposes more than two lots, in any of those cases, where there is a proposal to apply a density code above the base code as provided in Clause 5.2.4, the following provisions shall apply:

(a) The lot the subject of the application must have a total lot area greater than 1300m2; and

(b) Where the application proposes more than four grouped dwellings and/or four multiple dwellings or more than four strata lots, or where the subdivision or survey strata subdivision application proposes to create more than four lots, at least one dwelling or lot must be provided as a single bedroom dwelling or as an aged or dependant persons dwelling."

Rural Zones

Depending on the location of your property, the subdivision of rural zoned land may be impacted by one or more of the following documents:

Industrial & Commercial Zones

Industrial and commercial zoned land is commonly affected by built strata subdivision applications, where one building is broken up into individual strata lots.

Engineering information

The City of Swan is a licensed user of AUS-SPEC, part of the national specification guidelines for subdivisions and property development. As the guidelines can change, it’s a good idea to review this section regularly.

Before you do anything, please note the following important points:

View the City's Standard Drawings