Dual occupancy vs Secondary Dwellings

Secondary Dwelling or Dual Occupancy

The difference between a secondary dwelling and a dual occupancy

A secondary dwelling is also colloquially known as a granny flat. secondary dwelling is the use of a premises containing two dwellings on one lot (whether or not attached) for a single household

A dual occupancy in Queensland is also called a duplex. Unlike other States in Australia the terms are inter-changable in QLD. A dual occupancy is the use of a premises containing two dwellings on one lot (whether or not attached) for separate households.

Can I rent out my secondary dwelling?

In most Queensland local government areas, a secondary dwelling cannot be rented to a seperate household. A secondary dwelling (granny flat) is intended for large family groups e.g. a family in the main house and grandparents in the granny flat. 

Brisbane Secondary Dwelling and Dual Occupancies Q&A

Detached granny flat (secondary dwelling) at the rear of a dwelling

• A secondary dwelling is not specified as being prescribed accepted development for building work in the Traditional building character overlay or the Pre-1911 building overlay.

• An exemption certificate may be considered where a development application is only required as a result of works for a secondary dwelling at the rear.

Kitchens in secondary dwellings

• The Acceptable outcome of the Dwelling house / Dwelling house (small lot) code requires that development comprises not more than one dwelling house and one secondary dwelling, occupied by one household…

• Council’s interpretation for common provisions for food and other essentials for living includes a shared kitchen and a shared laundry.

• A secondary dwelling may have a stand-alone kitchen or laundry through achieving performance outcome PO1 but a development application is required.

What is a dwelling?

A dwelling is a building or part of a building used or capable of use as a self-contained residence that must include the following:

  • food preparation facilities
  • a bath or shower
  • a toilet and wash basin
  • clothes washing facilities.

A dual occupancy may be:

  • contained on one lot or
  • each dwelling unit may be contained on its own lot subject to a Community Title Scheme.

Have more questions about your secondary dwelling or dual occupancy?

You can contact the JREY team and request a Preliminary Planning Review [PPR].