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What Size Shed Needs a Permit in Australia?

When planning to build a shed in Australia, one of the first questions you might ask is, "What size shed needs a permit?" Understanding the regulations around shed construction is crucial to ensure compliance and avoid potential fines or legal issues. In this blog, we'll provide a clear guide on what size shed needs a permit and other important considerations for your custom shed project.

Understanding Shed Permit Requirements

In Australia, the rules for shed permits can vary depending on the state or the local authority area within which it is to be built, size, location, and intended use of the shed. Here's a general overview of what size shed needs a permit:

1. Sheds Up to 10 Square Metres:

If your shed is no larger than 10 square metres and no higher than 2.4 metres, you typically do not need a permit. These smaller sheds are often used for storage or as garden sheds. However, always check with your local council as rules can vary slightly by region in addition to other factors like closeness to property line, fire regulations, height and wind strength rating considerations. 

2. Sheds Between 10 and 20 Square Metres:

For sheds between 10 and 20 square metres, the requirements can vary based on the local council regulations. In many cases, you might not need a permit if the shed meets specific height and setback requirements. However, it's essential to confirm with your local council to ensure compliance. Better to be within the law than to disregard it and find yourself in breach of council regs.

3. Sheds Over 20 Square Metres:

Sheds larger than 20 square metres generally require a building permit. These larger structures may be used as workshops, garages, or even custom sheds for various purposes like aircraft hangars. The permit process ensures that the shed complies with building codes, wind strength ratings and safety standards.

Factors Affecting Shed Permit Requirements

Aside from size, other factors can influence whether you need a permit for your custom shed:


The placement of your shed on your property can affect permit requirements. Sheds located too close to property boundaries or on slopes may need additional approvals.


The height of the shed is another critical factor. Even smaller sheds may require a permit if they exceed a certain height, typically around 2.4 metres.

Intended Use:

The intended use of the shed can also impact permit requirements. Sheds used for habitable spaces or commercial purposes usually need permits regardless of size.

Local Council Regulations:

Each local council in Australia may have specific regulations and requirements. It's always best to consult with your local council to understand the exact requirements for your area.

Materials to be used: 

Steel sheds are the most durable and able to withstand the harsh Australian conditions. Any other material may be affected by council regulation complications.

How to Apply for a Shed Permit

If your shed requires a permit, here's a general outline of the application process:

Check Local Regulations: Start by checking the specific regulations and requirements of your local council.

Prepare Your Plans: Have detailed plans and specifications for your custom shed, including dimensions, materials, and intended use. Often your custom shed supplier can furnish you with plans.

Submit Your Application: Submit your permit application to your local council, along with any required documents and fees.

Wait for Approval: The council will review your application and may conduct inspections to ensure compliance.

Start Construction: Once you have received your permit, you can begin constructing your shed according to the approved plans.

Benefits of Getting a Permit

Obtaining a permit for your custom shed has several benefits:

  • Legal Compliance: Ensures that your shed meets local building codes and regulations.
  • Safety: Verifies that the shed is constructed safely and will not pose a risk to occupants or neighbours.
  • Property Value: Properly permitted structures can enhance the value of your property. Without permits there can be a legal tangle that has implications for any transfer of ownership on sale of the property.

Final Thoughts

Understanding what size shed needs a permit in Australia is crucial for a smooth and compliant building process. Whether you're planning a small garden shed or a larger custom shed, checking with your local council and obtaining the necessary permits will save you time, money, and potential legal issues.

We hope this guide has provided you with valuable insights into shed permit requirements. If you're planning to build a shed, take the time to research and ensure you're meeting all the necessary regulations. Happy building!

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