Establishment or Occupation of a Temporary Home Approval

Subordinate Local Law No. 1 (Administration 2011) (the Local Law) Schedule 8 provides the opportunity for landowners/residential caretakers to reside on their property under an establishment or occupation of a temporary home approval while their permanent dwelling (Class 1a Building) is being built. 

‘Establishment or occupation of a temporary home’ is defined as ‘the erection, construction, installation, positioning or placement of a structure used or intended for temporary use as a place of residence’. This includes caravans/motorhomes, cars, vans, bus, tents etc.

To apply for an approval for the occupation of a temporary home the applicant must hold a current development/building permit for the erection of a new permanent residence or conversion of an existing building or structure into a permanent residence at the nominated property.

Temporary home approvals are granted for six (6) months on rural properties and three (3) months on urban properties. The Local Law provides opportunities to apply for extensions in three (3) month increments, where satisfactory progress has been made with the construction of the permanent residence on the property where the temporary home is located, however will not be completed within the initial approved time frame.

Approvals are subject to the following conditions:

  • The approval holder must comply with any applicable standards for the approved activities outlined in the Gympie Regional Council’s Standards for the Conduct of Prescribed Activities; and
  • Not cease construction of the permanent residence on the property for a period greater than three (3) calendar months; and
  • Ensure the provision of the basic amenities required for living, such as kitchen facilities, bathing facilities, laundry, toilet, sleeping accommodation, wastewater disposal, refuse disposal, safe and adequate water supply; and
  • Keep the temporary home in good order and repair;
  • Ensure the temporary home is not unsightly or unhygienic.

Class 10a buildings (Non-Residential Buildings), for example a private garage, carport, shed, or similar (eg. unapproved shipping container) are defined as non-habitable buildings as per the Building Code of Australia (BCA) and are not permitted to be used for residential purposes without approval (Section 119 of the Building Act 1975).  

Application for an approval to temporarily reside in a Class 10a (Non-Residential) building can be made through Council’s Building Services. You will be required to lodge a development application for a permanent dwelling (Class 1a Building) at the same time.

The approvals are granted for a period of six (6) months, with an opportunity to apply for an extension.

Section 7 - Temporary Occupation of a Non-Residential Building.

Can also be found at step 1 – see link below:

Temporary home that does not require an approval

An exemption for an approval exists for the use of a caravan as a temporary home on an urban property for a period of up to two (2) weeks in any eight (8) week period. The exemption may allow the property owner to have visitors stay at their property or allow an absentee owner to attend their property for maintenance purposes. In these circumstances, the temporary home occupiers must have access to facilities (water supply, toilet, bathing and waste and wastewater disposal) to prevent public health risks, nuisance, and environmental impacts.

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