Common Development Enquiries

Change of Use

State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 (Codes SEPP) outlines the forms of low-impact commercial and industrial development that can proceed as exempt development (requiring no planning approval) or complying development (requiring the issuing of a Complying Development Certificate (CDC)). Change of use of premises is one form of development that may be permitted as either exempt development or complying development under the Codes SEPP, depending on the type of use proposed.

Change of use of premises that may proceed as exempt development are included within Part 2 Subdivision 10A of the Codes SEPP. This includes a change of use from a lawful current use to a new use such as the following:

  • a type of office premises to another type of office premises, or
  • a type of retail premises to another type of retail premises, or
  • a bulky goods premises to another bulky goods premises, or
  • a light industry to another light industry, or

It does not include some specific uses such as a food and drink premises, skin penetration clinics or restricted premises etc. Some minor building alterations (internal and external) may also be able to be carried out as exempt development.

Part 5 of the Codes SEPP also provides for 10 day approvals for some change of use and internal fit out of bulky goods, commercial, light industrial or warehouse premises, as complying development. Tenants or property owners can seek to obtain a CDC for change of use and/or proposed work if the proposal meets the standards outlined in the Codes SEPP and any other regulations applicable (such as fire or food safety regulations). The CDC can be issued by either Council or an accredited certifier.

For more information on the Codes SEPP including the details of exempt and complying development types, visit the Department of Planning and Infrastructure, call 1300 305 695 or email

For more information about change of use applications or Council acting as your accredited certifier, please call the Customer Service Centre on 9725 0222.