Short-term rental of a house, unit or an investment property can be a valuable source of additional income and has been popularised in recent years by Airbnb. We value the role that a range of accommodation options can play in the support of our region and provide guidance to the community to ensure this is achieved in a responsible manner.

This information is covered in our print friendly information sheet (PDF): Airbnb & Short - Term Accommodation INFO 011

Types of short-term accommodation

When renting-out all or part of your home or other accommodation premises for short-term accommodation Council considers this type of land use as either Home based business or Short term accommodation.

Home based business

A Home based business is where the permanent resident resides at the premises while renting part of it out for short-term accommodation. Bed and breakfasts and farmstays are examples of a Home based business.

Additional to this land use type, the function and scale of operations must be in keeping with the primary use of the dwelling as a private permanent residence. Eg:

  • The permanent resident must reside in the dwelling
  • The maximum number of rooms for bed and breakfast, or accommodation units in a farmstay is 6 in the Rural zone and 3 in other zones
  • The maximum number of overnight guests is 6 (other than in the Rural zone where there is no limit)
  • Meals must not be served for gain, other than to paying overnight guests
  • 1 additional car parking space must be provided for each room occupied by paying guests.

There may be other considerations and it is best to refer to the Home based business use code of the Planning scheme.

Short-term accommodation

If the owner or lessee does not reside at the premises and rents all or part of it out for short-term accommodation, the use may be defined as Short-term accommodation. This type of use provides accommodation to guests for less than 3 consecutive months to tourists or travellers and may contain a manager's residence, office or recreation facilities for the exclusive use of guests.

Is Council approval required?

Home-based businesses may require development approval and Short-term accommodation will require a development approval. Other approvals, such as placing an advertising device on the premises or a food licence may also be required.

A Home based business as described above is considered an Accepted development subject to requirements if in one of the following zones and does not require a development approval if meeting the requirements:

  • Low density residential zone
  • Low-medium density residential zone
  • Township zone
  • Rural residential zone
  • Rural zone.

Outside of these zones a Home based business is a Code assessable development and will require a development approval.

Short-term accommodation will require a development approval. Ie: Changing to this type of use is generally Impact assessable development in a residential zones except in Low-medium density residential zone or Township zone where it is Code assessable.

The Preparing & lodging an application part of our website provides the next steps where an application is required.

Tips for setting up a holiday or short-term rental

  1. Check for other regulations and licences you may need for your proposed business, such as:
    • A food business licence from Council if you are preparing food. Eg: providing a bed and breakfast type of service
    • Signage considerations and possible approvals
    • Body corporate rules and regulations.
  2. If you need help lodging a development application, a consultant town planner can help by preparing a development application for you.
  3. A private certifier must approve any building work, such as extensions. This is separate to Council’s development approval.
  4. Contact us for more information.

Getting help and more information

Getting advice early on any plans in this area is recommended to ensure you have thought of all the issues and implications of setting up a holiday or short-term accommodation facility. While Council staff can provide some assistance through the process, you may wish to engage a consultant, town planner, surveyor or other appropriately qualified professional.

As outlined above, this information sheet explains the key requirements for someone wishing to rent out their home, unit or investment property on a short-term basis: Development - Airbnb & Short - Term Accommodation INFO 011

Refer to Part 5 of the Planning Scheme for a complete answer or contact us.