All Topics / Value Adding / Subdivisionin Brisbane

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  • Profile photo of lilyhutchlilyhutch
    Join Date: 2007
    Post Count: 49

    Can someone please give me some pointers on calculating costs of subdivision in Brisbane? I know application is around $1480 but do not know how to calculate the fee for services/parkland etc. Thanks

    Profile photo of happyjack72happyjack72
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 53

    Hi lilyhutch,

    We are currently starting a subdivision process in Brisbane as well. We bought the property with a development permit in place already. The council contributions (water headworks, sewerage headworks, parks, street lighting, etc) should be on the local council website, although the documents can be difficult to read and the calculation formulae confusing. Best to speak to one of the town planners in your local council.

    About the cost of the works, you'll need a quote from a surveyor or engineer. We approached the surveyor who did the plan of the initial development application: we spoke to him on the phone a couple of times, had some email correspondence, asked the local council and some of his previous clients about his work. Things seemed reasonable, so we proceeded to ask him to start the subdivision process. He will be co-ordinating it: liaising with council, hiring an engineer, etc. For a fee of course. I'm always prepared to pay money for a good job. If you don't know a surveyor or engineer, you can try asking the council, again the town planning section. They can't really recommend anyone, but they can give usually give you 3-4 names and then you can approach them yourself.

    Hope that helps.

    Profile photo of gafamagafama
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 118

    Hi Lilyhutch

    There are  a number of costs associated so I'm not sure if you mean council costs (which should be available from them) to the actual costs of the subdivision.  The costs relating to the subdivision depend very much on what needs to be done.  Are there existing services to the block, how far do you have to run them to the new blocks, do you have to do kerb and guttering, put in lights, water detention, etc, etc, etc. 

    The only way to know is to have the project designed then costed by the appropriate people – engineers Including stormwater, or a QS who can give you a ballpark figure.

    Hope that helps.



    Profile photo of AmandaBSAmandaBS
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 549

    Here's an extract of a document off our website about Subdividing that may be of help:

    What is Subdividing?
    Subdividing is when a piece of land is split into two or more pieces (ie separate lots). The process is controlled by the local Council. Planning codes and procedures vary significantly between Councils and also between States and Territories, as do the relevant fees and charges.
    Factors to examine when considering a Subdivision
    • Local town planning regulations

    • Land zoning restrictions
    • Minimum size of lots
    • Access to water and sewerage services
    • Setback requirements
    • Minimum building envelopes
    • Parks and open space
    • Easements
    • Vehicle access including Council refuse collection
    • Storm water management
    • Increased noise from new development
    • Environmental and heritage issues

    Hidden Costs
    A subdivision can take several months (and sometimes even years) to complete so you must factor in your holding costs such as:
    • Interest
    • Rates
    • Land maintenance – (eg slashing and weed control)

    Many astute Developers make the purchase contract for the land subject to the acceptance of a Development application approval with Council. This is usually done with an option agreement (see your Solicitor for more information)

    Dividing the Land
    Before you rush out and build a new dividing fence in your backyard, you should first consult your local Council for specific guidelines and costings, as it is imperative that the property is divided correctly. Any errors at this stage will cause major problems further down the track.
    The Process
    Most Councils require a Development/Planning Application to be lodged, together with details and drawings of your proposal. A Town Planner or Surveyor can assist you with this process, and they may also be able to give advice regarding conditions that the Council is likely to require.

    Before lodgement of the Application, you can ask the Council for a “Pre lodgement” meeting to discuss your subdivision and determine what issues will need to be addressed in the Application.

    When the Council receives your application, they may require you to erect a notice board for public viewing. The purpose of the board is to alert the public of the proposal by providing details of the subdivision. The Council may also write to the owners of the residents of the neighbouring properties advising of your intentions. We suggest that you contact the Council to find out what procedures your local Council uses.

    Additional information the Council may require
    Water and Sewerage 
    • Are existing services available?
    • Can the existing infrastructure cope with increased use or need upgrading?
    • Is permission required from neighbours to access property?
    Storm Water
    • How will storm water run off be managed?
    • Is a drainage pit required?
    • Are tanks required to regulate the flow of storm water?
    • Will existing main road traffic noise affect the subdivision?
    • If so, how will this be reduced? (Fences and/or earthworks)
    Soil Conditions
    • Do the soil conditions (eg.sand, clay) impact on road and footpath design?
    Other issues

    • Footpath
    • Lighting
    • Signage

    Issues for the Developer to consider
    For the Developer there are also other issues to consider such as:

    • “Wasted” land due to unusual configurations
    • Steep slopes
    • Flood-prone land
    • Other planning overlays (ie restrictions)
    • Other factors that may reduce the number of lots and so profitability.

    Approval of the Development Application
    The approval process for your Application may take several months depending on the complexity and size of the subdivision.

    You will then be issued with a conditional approval covering topics such as:

    • Developer to supply a plan of survey and mark land with survey pegs
    • Road reserve
    • Easements over stormwater, water and sewage mains
    • Requirement that storm water pipes be designed to cope with a “1 in 100 year” event.
    • Dust control
    • Hours of permitted work (usually Mon – Sat 6:30am to 6:30pm)
    • Headwork contributions to be paid by Developer
    • Open space (parks)
    • Social infrastructure
    • Road infrastructure
    • Water infrastructure
    • Sewerage infrastructure
    • Street scape contribution
    • Disposal of cleared vegetation
    • Entry walls or features
    • Connection fees to live sewer mains
    • Road (width, pavement depth, footpaths, kerb and channel, ramp profiles)
    • Street lighting
    • Fire Extinguisher (Battle axe blocks)
    • Underground electricity and phone
    • Erosion and silt management
    • Maintenance period of roads
    • Retaining walls
    • Fire ant inspections
    • Portable long service leave for Building and Construction Industry

    If you are not satisfied with the Council’s decision, you may apply for a review.  

    Operational Works
    Before work can begin, you will need to engage the services of a Civil Engineer to design and draw the sewer, water, road, footpaths and any other Council requirements.

    This is a separate application usually referred to as “Operational Works” and attracts additional fees and charges.

    Final Stage
    All civil work will require Council and Engineering certification. When the subdivision has been completed to the satisfaction of the Council, you can then apply to register each separate title deed.
    Land subdivision is a $mart way to fast track profits into your investment portfolio. However, as with all investment decisions, thorough research is necessary in order to balance the level of risk associated and ensure that the process runs as smoothly and quickly as possible, and that the best, most profitable outcome is achieved.
    Profile photo of lilyhutchlilyhutch
    Join Date: 2007
    Post Count: 49

    Thanks all – I have a much clearer idea of costs. I have spoken to a civil engineer/planner/surveyor. Looks like it will cost approximately $45k.

    Profile photo of MysteryMystery
    Join Date: 2006
    Post Count: 87

    Hi Lilyhutch,

    Is that $45,000 (see your last post above) or $4, 000 – $5,000 …… We have just bought a house on 800m2 corner block in Redbank Plains, which can be subdivided. Can you confirm the price please.


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