A granny flat is a self-contained living space typically located on the same property as a single-family home. The name “granny flat” often stems from its historical use as a place for elderly family members, such as your parents or grandparents, to live independently while still being close to their family.

Here are some key benefits of having a granny flat:


One of the primary advantages of a granny flat is the ability to accommodate multigenerational living. It provides a separate and private living space for older family members or adult children, allowing them to have their own space while remaining close to the main family home. For elderly family members, a granny flat offers the benefits of independent living while still being close to family for support and companionship. It provides a sense of autonomy and privacy while ensuring help is nearby when needed.


Many homeowners choose to rent out their granny flats, providing a source of additional income. This can help offset mortgage costs or other household expenses. It’s also a great option for homeowners looking to invest in real estate.


Adding a granny flat can increase the overall value of your property. It adds versatility and appeals to a wider range of potential buyers, making your property more attractive in the real estate market.


Granny flats are versatile and can serve various purposes beyond housing family members or generating rental income. They can be used as home offices, guest quarters, art studios, or even as a space for ageing in place, making them adaptable to changing needs.


Granny flats are often more cost-effective to build than traditional home additions because they are smaller in size and have simplified layouts. They can be a more affordable way to expand your living space.


What kind of approval will you need?

A Complying Development Certificate (CDC) essentially means a fast-track approval process. If you want to build a granny flat in NSW and your project meets specific standards, you can get a CDC instead of going through a more detailed local council development application process.

To get a CDC for a granny flat, your project must meet certain criteria set out in the State Environmental Planning Policy (Housing) 2021.

These criteria include things like:

  • Size – Granny Flats can be  no bigger than 60m², and you must have a 24m² courtyard space for the granny flat, with an area of at least 4m wide.
  • Location on the property – The minimum setback requirements are; 3m from the rear boundary, 900mm from the side boundary and 5m from the front boundary. For  battle-axe blocks, an access handle of at least 3m wide is required. 
  • The primary dwelling – Your primary dwelling needs to be a council-approved structure.
  • Impact on neighbours

If your granny flat plan fits within these rules, you can get a CDC from a private certifier or the council, and it’s usually quicker than a full development application. 

If your property doesn’t meet these conditions, that does not mean building a granny flat is impossible. We can still secure approval for your Granny Flat through a Development Application (DA). This process requires approval from your local council.

Whatever approval process your granny flat needs, the team at Sydney Drafting are equipped to manage the entire process for you, handling the submission of all applications and documents on your behalf.

Do you have the documentation required?

Before starting your Granny Flat project with Sydney Drafting, we recommend having a few key documents ready. This preparation ensures a smooth and informed site assessment, helping us give you an accurate quote and identify potential issues early on.

  1. Section 10.7 Certificate: Also known as a ‘Planning Certificate’, this document provides crucial details about your property, such as zoning and restrictions. It’s important to have a current version (ideally not older than 6-12 months) to reflect the latest council regulations.

  2. Sewer Diagram: Essential for understanding the plumbing layout of your property, this diagram shows the private and main sewer lines. It’s vital for planning the construction and plumbing connections for your Granny Flat.

  3. Title Search (Certificate of Title): This document is the legal record of your property, detailing ownership, easements, and any covenants. It’s crucial to ensure that Granny Flat construction complies with legal requirements and property agreements.

you don't have to manage this alone

If the thought of handling paperwork is daunting, or if you simply prefer to focus on the more exciting aspects of building, let us take care of it. During our discussions, just let us know your preferences. We’re here to ensure that every step of your Granny Flat project is taken care of, allowing you to concentrate on bringing your vision to life.

A Granny flat can be a valuable addition to a property, offering a range of benefits for both homeowners and their families. If you want to know more, please get in contact with our team today. 


Unfortunately no. Since a Granny Flat is considered a secondary dwelling, it’s not possible to have more than one secondary dwelling on the same property.

It is possible to build granny flats in bushfire or flood-prone areas, but there are additional regulations and requirements that must be met. These regulations are in place to ensure the safety and resilience of the structure in such high-risk areas. Our team can advise you more if there is any concern. 

The short answer is yes, however it depends on each individual council. We’ll also need to take into account factors such as; making sure the total size is still less than 60m2, height limits and how the building affects neighbors. Please feel free to contact us for more information. 

The site inspection is essential as it allows both us and you to spot any potential issues on your property, such as hazards, construction challenges, service connection problems, or planning restrictions that might affect your Granny Flat.

We want to give you a comprehensive quote, ensuring all aspects are covered to avoid any unexpected expenses down the line.

In most cases, you’re required to provide at least one additional parking space when building a Granny Flat.

No, a granny flat does not have to be a separate structure; it can be attached to the main house or even be built above it. However, choosing whether to have a detached or attached granny flat will depend on your property layout, preferences, budget, and local council regulations.

Once you submit your application for a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) to the Private Certifying Authority, it usually takes around 14 days to receive approval.

On the other hand, the Development Application (DA) process is more time-consuming and can take anywhere from 2 to 6 months for approval after submission to the Council. This duration can vary based on several factors, including the Council’s workload, any objections from neighbors, the complexity of your design, or the number of different council departments that need to review and approve your proposal.

Yes, your property must be a minimum of 450m2 in size to be eligible for a Granny Flat. 

As of April 2023, the top three most popular suburbs in Sydney for granny flats include:

  1. Blacktown: Known for its affordable housing and large block sizes, making it ideal for granny flats.

  2. The Hills District: Particularly suburbs like Castle Hill and Baulkham Hills, where larger block sizes and family-oriented communities make granny flats a viable option.

  3. Western Sydney suburbs like Auburn and Granville also see a high demand for granny flats due to their affordability and proximity to employment hubs.

It’s important to remember that you cannot sell a granny flat separately, as it is a secondary dwelling and hence is connected to the title of the primary dwelling.


Sydney Drafting is made up of both trades people and building designers, meaning our house plans work. They have been drawn by designers, with builders in mind.