This page gives an overview of the requirements for subdividing property in the City of Melville. It has information about different types of subdivisions, the subdivision application process, minimum lot sizes and strata titles.
Subdivision is the division or ‘cutting up’ of land into new lots, or the amalgamation of multiple lots into one larger lot. This process is controlled by the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC).
There are two basic types of subdivision:
- Freehold (green-title) subdivision; and
- Strata-title subdivision.
Properties that are created independently of each other in a freehold lot are also classed as ‘single house’ lots. Generally the land has no common areas that need to be shared (unless otherwise indicated on the certificate of title).
Properties that are owned separately but form part of a group and often involve some ‘common property’.
The Subdivision Application Process
The Western Australian Planning Commission is responsible for approving all subdivision applications. As a part of the assessment process, they will refer applications to us, as well as other service agencies such as Western Power and the Water Corporation.
We will make a recommendation to the WAPC based on our Local Planning Scheme No. 6, the Operational Policy 1.1 Subdivision of Land – General Principles and Development Control Policy 2.2 Residential Subdivision, and local planning policies. Once the WAPC has received recommendations from us and relevant service providers, the WAPC may approve an application with or without conditions, or refuse an application.
Any application for subdivision needs to be lodged with the WAPC. You can find more information about the process, fees and forms on the WAPC website.
Subdivision Clearance Applications
If the WAPC has issued conditional approval, you will need to apply to us and the service providers listed on the conditional approval letter and request clearance of the conditions of approval.
To apply for a subdivision clearance, please:
- Submit a covering letter referencing the WAPC reference number and conditions to be cleared by us, and
- A copy of the approval from the WAPC; and
- A copy of the subdivision/survey-strata plan.
The fee structure for clearances is based on the number of lots to be cleared (excluding common property) and can be found in our Planning Application Fees Schedule. Subdivision clearance for 0-5 lots is $73.00 per lot.
Required Lot Size for Subdivision
The required lot size depends on the zone and density code which has been assigned to the property.
For residential subdivisions, the Residential Design Codes (R-Codes) sets out the minimum and average lot sizes. The table below provides a snapshot of the lots size requirements for single houses and grouped dwellings in the most common density codes in the City of Melville. In order to subdivide your property, you are generally required to meet both the minimum and average lot size as well as the minimum frontage.
Residential Density Code
Minimum Lot size (m2)
Average Lot size (m2)
Rear Battleaxe Lot (m2)
Minimum frontage (m)
The WAPC may approve a subdivision which does not meet the standards outlined above taking into account clause 5.1.1 of the R-Codes and the Development Control Policy 2.2 Residential Subdivision.
Granny Flats and Ancillary Dwellings
Under the provisions of the R-Codes, an ancillary dwelling, otherwise known as a granny flat, is permitted on single house lots which are more than 450m2 subject to meeting all other relevant provisions. A granny flat can not be subdivided from the main dwelling however it may be rented out to people who are not related to the occupants of the main house.
The R-Codes also allow for the minimum lot size to be reduced by up to one third to accommodate a single bedroom dwelling or an aged or dependent persons dwelling.
A strata title is the most common title associated with town houses and home units. It is evidence of ownership of a unit (which is called a lot) in a strata plan.
A strata plan divides a building and its associated land into lots, each of which has a strata title, and usually common property.
Common property is the part of the land and building in the strata plan which does not form part of any unit, for instance, stairways, passages, driveways and carpark.
A Guide to Strata Titles
Landgate has produced 'A Guide to Strata Titles'.
This guide is useful for anyone who lives in or owns or will be a prospective owner of a strata unit and includes information on:
- Rights and obligations of owners and the strata company:
- Insurance issues
- Renovations and/or additions to the property
- Standard by-laws.
Applying for a Strata Title
For information on how to apply for a strata title, visit the Landgate website.
You will be required to include with your application, either a BA10 Occupancy Permit (commercial buildings – use form BA9) or BA14 Building Approval Certificate (residential buildings – use form BA13) with your application for a strata plan or survey strata plan. For more information and to download the forms, visit the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety website.
Conversion of Strata Plans
If you wish to convert an existing strata plan to a survey-strata plan, please contact Landgate.
The advice on this page is a general guide only. We encourage you to contact us to if you have questions regarding a specific project. A planning officer is available during business hours to provide advice on a range of matters either in person, over the phone, or by email. Depending on the complexity of the advice being sought, we may ask you to lodge a request for written advice and a fee of $73 will apply.