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Replace or build a new side or rear fence

You may need a Planning Permit, a Building Permit or both to replace or build a side or rear fence.

Depending on your circumstances, you may also need a:

  • Tree Works Permit
  • Road or Footpath Occupancy Permit
  • Vehicular Crossing Permit
  • Asset Protection Permit

How to use this guide

To help you work out which permits you need, begin at Step 1 and answer the questions one at a time. You may be asked to look at zoning information, and to assess the height, materials and purpose of the fence.

If you are building a new front fence, see Replace or build a new front fence.

If you need help with a Planning Permit, contact our Statutory Planning team on 9278 4888 or email Statutory Planning.
 
If you need help with a Building Permit, contact our Building Services team on 9278 4999 or email Building Services.

Before you begin

Before finalising your design:

If you are replacing a fence you may need a Planning or Building Permit for the demolition of the existing fence. To determine which permits you need for demolition, see Demolish all or part of a building.

Consent from both owners is required to replace a common boundary fence. For information about resolving boundary fencing disputes between neighbours, see Disputes over Side Fences.

Check if the work is routine repair and maintenance

Consider whether you will be replacing or building an entire side or rear fence, or whether you will be repairing a small piece of fencing material to keep the structure in good condition.

For example, replacing some damaged palings is regarded as routine repair and maintenance.

If you are unsure whether your works are considered routine repair and maintenance, contact Statutory Planning.

Is the work routine repair and maintenance?

 

 

 

 

 

Check if the fence will be built in a Heritage Overlay

  1. Go to Planning Maps Online and search for the address of your property.

  2. Follow the prompts to create and open a free Planning Property Report.

  3. Read the report to see whether you are planning to build a fence in a Heritage Overlay.

Note that other overlays may appear. We may refer to the overlay listing at a later stage.

Are you planning to build the fence in a Heritage Overlay?

 

 

 

 

 

Check if your property is on the Victorian Heritage Register

  1. Refer to the report from Planning Maps Online.
  2. Look for the Heritage Overlay Schedule link and take note of the schedule number.
  3. Click the Heritage Overlay Schedule link. The Schedule to the Heritage Overlay page appears.
  4. Find your schedule number. See whether the 'Included on the Victorian Heritage Register' column displays 'Yes' for your schedule number.

If the property is on the Victorian Heritage Register:

  • You may need approval from Heritage Victoria for or any buildings and works including internal changes. Contact Heritage Victoria for advice on how to apply for their approval.
  • You may continue to apply for other permits while your Heritage Victoria application is being assessed. But you can only begin construction after all necessary approvals and permits are granted.

Is your property listed on the Victorian Heritage Register?

Check if the fence will be in a Commercial, Urban Floodway, Special Use or Priority Development Zone

Refer to the report from Planning Maps Online to view zoning information for your property. See whether the fence will be built in any of the following:

  • Commercial Zone
  • Urban Floodway Zone
  • Special Use Zone
  • Priority Development Zone

Will the fence be built in a Commercial, Urban Floodway, Special Use or Priority Development Zone?

 

 

 

 

Check if the fence will be built in an Environmental Significance Overlay

Refer to the map from Planning Maps Online to see whether the land on which you plan to build the fence is in an Environmental Significance Overlay.

If so, consider the materials out of which the fence will be built. Unless the fence is post and wire, you will need Planning permission.

Are you planning to build a fence in an Environmental Significance Overlay out of materials other than post and wire?

 

 

 

 

Check if the fence will be built in a Land Subject to Inundation Overlay

Refer to the map from Planning Maps Online to see whether the land on which you plan to build the fence is in Land Subject to Inundation Overlay.

If so, consider the materials out of which the fence will be built. Unless the fence is post and wire, or post and rail, you will need Planning permission.

Am I planning to build a fence in a Land Subject to Inundation Overlay out of materials other than post and wire or post and rail?

 

 

 

 

 

Check for other overlays that may impact your works

Refer to the map from Planning Maps Online. See whether you are planning to build the fence in any of the following:

  • Special Building Overlay
  • Significant Landscape Overlay
  • Design and Development Overlay Schedule Number 31

If so, contact our Statutory Planning team on 9278 4888 to determine whether you need a Planning Permit for your works.

Am I planning to build a fence in an overlay that requires Planning permission?

 

 

 

 

 

Apply for a Planning Permit, if needed

If you have determined that you need a Planning Permit for your project:

  1. Provide a clear copy of your Certificate of Title, including the lot plan. You can get this from the Landata website. The Certificate of Title must be no more than 28 days' old.
  2. Write a cover letter explaining your proposal.
  3. Prepare a plan drawn to scale (1:100 or 1:200) with full dimensions. The plan must show the site, floor layout and elevations.
  4. Check whether your application is eligible to be fast-tracked under VicSmart.
  5. Complete the Planning Permit application form and lodge the form, fee and supporting documents with Council. 
    To download the form and submit the application, see Apply for a Planning Permit.
    If you need a permit to demolish an existing fence, the Planning Permit application you submit can be for both the demolition of the existing fence and the construction of a new fence.
  6. Now, check whether you need a Building Permit.

Application fees

For non-VicSmart applications:

Cost of development Fee
Less than $10,000 $199.90
$10,000 to $100,000 $629.40

For VicSmart applications:

Cost of development Fee
$10,000 or less $199.90
More than $10,000 $429.50

Check the function of the side or rear fence

Consider whether the fence will be used for any of the following:

  • A swimming pool barrier
  • A spa safety barrier
  • An outdoor play space for a children's services centre (childcare centre)

Is the fence part of a swimming pool barrier, spa barrier or childcare centre play space?

 

 

 

 

 

 Check whether the height is 2m or more

Measure the distance from natural ground level to the top of the fence. Include any extensions to the fence, such as lattice or screening.

Is the height of the fence 2m or more?

 

 

 

 

Apply for a Building Permit, if needed

  1. Read the Building Permit application checklist to determine which supporting documents you need for your circumstances. If you are unsure what you need, contact the Building Services team on 9278 4999 or email Building Services.
  2. If your fence is 2m or more, you may need to apply for Report and Consent. Contact the Building Services Team if you are unsure whether your plans vary from siting requirements.
  3. Complete the Application for a Building Permit.
  4. Lodge the Building Permit application form, fee and supporting documents with Council. For fee information, email Building Services.

You may lodge the application for a Building Permit while other permit applications are still being processed, but may only begin construction when all required permits are granted

See whether there are any other permits you need for your project.

 

 

 

 

 

See whether you need to apply for any other permits

Consider whether you need to apply for other permits for your works.

If you need to:

If your works could:

After all permits have been granted, you may begin construction.

You may exit the guide.