MWa are low rise, medium density, housing specialists and this includes the type of housing known as Dual Occupancy.

Dual Occupancy in NSW is a type of residential land use, is defined in the model State Environmental Planning Policy and is included in local Council’s Local Environment Plan (LEPs) as follows:

A Dual Occupancy is:

  • a type of residential accommodation
  • dual occupancy means 2 dwellings on one lot of land that are attached to each other but does not include a secondary dwelling
  • a dual occupancy can be either dual occupancy (attached) or a dual occupancy (detached) – see the above diagram which shows the difference


So, a dual occupancy is typically two dwellings built on the same lot of land (Torrens title), owned by one owner and this means the two dwellings cannot be separately owned or separately sold.


  • a dual occupancy can be sub divided by the creation of a Strata Scheme (this includes the creation of individual strata lots which can be owned by seperate individuals and the creation of common property owned by the Owners Corporation), and
  • in some councils in NSW, the minimum sub division lot size does not apply in relation to land which is strata sub divided or community title


This can offer a huge advantage for those who wish to create two dwellings and be able to sell one and maintain ownership of the other.

The two dwellings can be attached or detached, side by side or one on top of each other, and the dwellings can be one or two stories (subject to the relevant planning development controls).  The seperate dwellings in the strata will also require seperate utility services.

We have frequent requests from prospective purchasers and clients who are interested in a Dual Occupancy, but are not exactly sure what’s permissible, possible or prudent for their site.  Refer to MWa’s articles: What is a Dual Occupancy?   and   The 3 Ps: Permissible, Possible & Prudent.

Dual Occupancy’s are not the same as adding a Secondary Dwelling (or a granny flat), so its also worth considering what’s permissible, possible and prudent under these seperate controls  – refer to MWa’s article: Secondary Dwellings Explained

MWa can assist with a Feasibility Study to assess the site against the relevant development standards which apply for a Dual Occupancy and these may include minimum width, maximum height, maximum floor space ratio, setbacks, provision of open space and landscape open space, private open space, parking etc.  This type of assessment starts with a detailed site survey of the site.

To find out more, talk to us on 0421 088 110 or book an Initial Consultation $400+GST.


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