Types of Subdivision

There are three types of subdivision the City handles and these are briefly explained below:

Freehold (fee simple) subdivision involves creating lots with permanent and absolute tenure of the land, and does not allow for areas of common property (although a similar arrangement is sometimes achieved through the use of easements). This type of subdivision is commonly associated with single house development.

Strata plans are the mechanism for creating strata schemes and strata titles under the Strata Titles Act 1985 as Amended. Strata plans define the lots in a strata scheme (areas owned individually) and common property (areas owned jointly by all lot owners in the strata scheme). Strata lots are limited in height and depth (the stratum of the lot). Strata plans show a building on at least one lot of the strata plan and stratum of the lots is always linked to buildings shown on the plan. This type of subdivision is commonly associated with multiple dwelling and commercial development.

Survey-strata plans are the mechanism for creating survey-strata schemes and survey-strata titles under the Strata Titles Act 1985 as Amended. Survey-strata plans define the lots in a survey-strata scheme, which are the areas in the scheme owned individually. Common property areas owned jointly by all lot owners may, or may not exist in survey-strata schemes and are defined as "common property lots". Survey-strata lots may be limited in height and depth but generally are not. No buildings are shown on survey-strata plans. This type of subdivision is commonly associated with grouped dwelling development.

Subdivision Requirements

The maximum number of lots permitted for single and grouped dwellings is determined through the zoning of the property cross referenced against Table 1 of the Residential Design Codes. Multiple dwellings are determined separately through plot ratio requirements outlined in Table 4 of the Residential Design Codes, which provide a maximum permitted total floor area rather than a minimum site area per dwelling.

There are a number of documents prepared by the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage which guide requirements for subdivision. These include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Development Control Policy 1.1 - Subdivision of Land General Principles
  • Development Control Policy 2.2 - Residential Subdivision
  • Development Control Policy 5.1 - Regional Roads Vehicular Access
  • State Planning Policy 3.1 - Residential Design Codes
  • Liveable Neighbourhoods
  • Local Government Guidelines for Subdivisional Development.
Application for Subdivision Approval

Applications for freehold or survey-strata subdivision are made to the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage. These applications are referred to the City for comment and recommendation during the assessment phase, and on approval the City is also involved in the clearance of conditions.

Applications for strata subdivision are in most instances made to the local government (strata plans involving a vacant lot being an exception). On receipt of these applications, the City will inspect the site to confirm development complies with plans and conditions of development approval and any issued building permits.

Subdivision Clearance

Subdivision approvals will in most instances have conditions of approval. Typically landowners have three years to address these conditions and seek clearance from the relevant clearing authority to confirm the conditions have been satisfactorily met.

The most common clearing authorities for residential subdivision include the relevant local government, and services providers such as Water Corporation and Western Power. Clearance needs to be sought from each clearing authority once the associated conditions have been met.

Subdivisional works associated with conditions of approval are to be carried out in accordance with the Local Government Guidelines for Subdivisional Development document, available through the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage.

A subdivision clearance information sheet is being prepared which will provide additional clarity and certainty to landowners when undertaking works.

When lodging a request for subdivision clearance to the City, the following documentation needs to be provided:

  • Covering letter detailing the associated subdivision reference, outlining the works undertaken to address each condition, and a nominated contact person/applicant for further information requests or to make on site access arrangements
  • Plan of subdivision prepared by a suitably qualified land surveyor
  • Additional information as required by the conditions imposed; examples could include a statutory declaration for removal of septic tanks or a geotechnical report
  • Payment in accordance with the City's Schedule of Fees.

Clearance requests can be lodged in person at the City of Bayswater Civic Centre, by mail to PO Box 467, Morley WA 6943, or email to

On receipt of a subdivision clearance request, the City's officers will review the information provided and undertake a site inspection to ensure works have been undertaken to a satisfactory standard. As internal access is not typically required for inspections, applicants will not generally be notified prior to inspection.

If works have not been undertaken to as satisfactory standard, the applicant will be notified of the issues to be addressed. A re-inspection fee may apply should further inspections be required.

Subdivision Clearance Information Sheet

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