Application information

Do I need development consent? 

If you're planning to build or renovate in Lake Macquarie, it's likely you'll need to gain development consent from Council. 

To obtain development consent, you will need to lodge a Development Application with Council via the NSW Planning Portal.

If construction works are proposed as part of the development, you can apply for a Construction Certificate at the same time as your DA or once the DA has been approved.

What is the process for lodging a development application?

Step 1: Pre-lodgement

Obtaining the correct advice before lodging your application can save you time and money later in the process.

Council's online tools can help you understand conditions that may apply to your property, such as zoning, or whether heritage or bush fire prone land must be considered. 

You can also contact Council to discuss your proposed development. 

Depending on the complexity or size of the development proposal, you may be recommended to book a pre-lodgement or concept meeting for detailed advice.

You may also wish to engage the services of a specialist consultant, such as a town planner, surveyor or architect, to assist you in preparing your application.

Step 2: Lodgement

If you're planning to build or renovate, you'll most likely need to lodge a development application with Council. 

To apply for a Development Application online, you must be registered or log in via the NSW Planning Portal.

Learn more about DAs

Step 3: Assessment

After lodging through the NSW Planning Portal, Council will assess your application. 

During the assessment process, your development may be put on notification for submissions from the public.

The assessing officer may complete site inspections and will gather information from internal and external experts on specialised topics, such as biodiversity and traffic. 

Once all the information is gathered, the assessing officer will assess your application against relevant legislation and advice provided via referrals. 

Track your application online

Step 4: Determination

When the assessing officer has gathered all the information needed, they will then determine the outcome of your application. 

Depending on the scale of the development, the decision is made by a Council officer, Council or the relevant planning panel (such as regional or state). 

You will receive a notice of determination, which includes conditions that must be adhered to and the approved stamped plans for the development. 

Step 5: Post-consent

After your DA has been approved, you will need a Construction Certificate to start building works. 

If your development involves a dwelling, you will also need to obtain an Occupation Certificate before moving in to ensure the build is safe for occupation. 

Learn about Council's certification services

What influences the type of approval required?  

Several factors influence what approvals are required for a proposed development.

The proposed development must be consistent with its land zoning and be permitted in the zone where it is to occur.

The property conditions of the proposed development must be suitable given any flooding, bushfire, heritage, contamination, geotechnical, ecological and other constraints that apply to the property.

The planning controls applicable to the land and the type of development proposed will affect the type of approval required.

Any existing approvals that apply to the property will influence what additional approvals may be required for the proposed development. 

Online development tools

Application enquiry

Using our Application Enquiry tool, you can:

  • submit your support or objection to a Development Application during the notification process
  • track the progress of Development Applications that are under assessment
  • access records of determined applications and certificates submitted since 1980

You can search by property address or application number, or search for a list of applications lodged within a date range.

The Application Enquiry tool displays documents regarding development applications and related certificates submitted from 1 January 1980. The information is made available under the provisions of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act).

Personal information of third parties, Aboriginal heritage reports, survey reports or internal floor plans are not published on the web and can be formally requested under the GIPA Act. Further information can be found at Access to information – Building and Development.

Application enquiry

Property enquiry

Property Enquiry is our tool for viewing information on conditions that apply to land and property, including permitted development and maps.

Property enquiry

Flood report

Lake Macquarie City Council's free Flood Report Tool provides information about the flood hazard for a specified property (lot) in Lake Macquarie City. This information may be useful when assessing risk for building or planning, or for providing evidence to help reduce insurance premiums.

Flood report tool

Geotechnical mapping

Lake Macquarie City Council's Geotechnical Mapping Tool provides information about the Geotechnical zones applicable for a specified property in Lake Macquarie City. This information along with the Geotechnical Guidelines(PDF, 1MB) may be useful when determining what documents are required to be lodged with your development application.

Geotechnical mapping

ePlanning Spatial Viewer (NSW)

The ePlanning Spatial Viewer is the NSW Planning Portal's digital mapping service. It provides up-to-date information on how planning controls and other planning matters affect a given property and the surrounding area.

ePlanning Spatial Viewer


Where can I get further advice?

Contact our Customer Service Centre via email or call 4921 0333.

You may then be referred to a Building or Duty Officer who can provide further advice or book an appointment to discuss in person.