Subdividing a minor dwelling

Want to create a separate title for your minor unit? We can help with that.

Subdividing a minor dwelling from your main property

Under the current Unitary Plan, subdivision of a minor unit is defined as a ‘prohibited activity’, largely due to the fact that when most of them were built, there were minimum area requirements for principal dwellings on a site. However, in most zones, it is possible to create separate titles for the units, utilising provisions elsewhere in the Unitary Plan to achieve this.

There are extra steps in this process compared to a standard change of tenure, namely we have to undertake a land use consent to convert the minor dwelling to a principal dwelling, and then a subdivision of the two dwellings becomes more straightforward. Council will require us to show that the minor unit complies with all rules and site standards of the zone you’re in, such as outdoor living space, outlook etc., or cover off any non-compliances with a resource consent. Once the minor dwelling is established as a principal dwelling, general subdivision rules will apply.

With a minor dwelling subdivision, in most cases only a portion of the development contributions will have been charged by Council when it was built, and in most cases, Council will require a top-up of these contributions based on todays contribution rates. We can find this information out for you and advise as part of the fee proposal process.

We will need to investigate your properties’ certificate of title for any interests registered on it (ie. encumbrances that may prohibit such a change/development), and then check out the zoning rules in your area. We’ll also need to check out the servicing – you’ll need a separate water meter for the unit as well as your principal dwelling, and separate power supply and metering. The drainage services do not need to be separate, but as with our usual change of tenure process, we will need to conduct CCTV investigations to confirm the location of the stormwater and wastewater lines.

What you need to know

About Minor Unit Subdivision

CONCENT goodtitle


Extra steps in the process means you’ll need a land use consent, and then a subdivision consent, from council

Value GoodTitle


You’ll be creating a new freehold title and a saleable principal dwelling, the value will increase dramatically

Time frame GoodTitle


This process can take between 10-12 months to complete

Minor Unit Subdivision Process

17 Esmonde Road, Takapuna, Auckland 0622

4 Meadow Street, Papanui,
Christchurch 8052


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