Frequently Asked Questions

Got a question for the team from BuildFast? Learn more about the residential development process.


What is a Complying Development Certificate (CDC)?

A Complying Development Certificate (CDC) is a fast-track approval process that is legislated by the NSW government and sits above the local council rules. Where we can develop under a CDC, there is no need for local council approval or neighbours to be notified prior to approval.

What is the Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code (LRMDHC)?

From 6th July 2018, the NSW Government introduced the “Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code”. This code incorporates the existing “Exempt and Complying Development State Environmental Planning Policy” and allows developers and property owners to build and subdivide dual occupancies, manor houses and terrace houses, without the need to apply to council for a development application.

What is a duplex (also known as a dual occupancy)?

A duplex is a single residential building with two individual dwellings under the one roof. Duplexes are also known as a ‘dual occupancy’ where each side is a completely separate home with its own entrance, amenities and yard. Duplexes (or dual occupancy) are built as one structure which minimises the build cost and maximises investment return.

What is a Manor House?

A manor house is a single residential building containing three or four dwellings on one lot of land. With each dwelling having its own entrance and amenities, a manor house can be up to two storeys high (excluding any basement). Each dwelling is attached by a common wall or floor and is built as one structure, often on top of one another. Manor Homes can also be referred to as a multi-dwelling house or residence.

What is a Terrace House?

A Terrace House is a minimum of 3 attached dwellings on a block with a minimum land frontage of 18 metres.  There is not a set maximum number of dwellings you can develop on a block to obtain a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) under the LRMDHC. The maximum number of dwellings is determined by the specifications of the block, which includes the width of the land frontage.

How many dwellings can I build on one block under the LRMDHC?

There is not a set maximum number of dwellings you can develop on a block to obtain a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) under the LRMDHC.  The maximum number of dwellings is determined by the type of building. Duplexes are limited to 2, manor houses are limited to 4 and terrace houses have no maximum number of dwellings.

What are the approximate costs for a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) project? Do they vary much between sites as long as the build type is the same (duplex, terrace houses, manor houses)?

Each site is independently costed, as site costs need to be accurately estimated to keep the overall cost down. Cost factors include groundworks, accessibility to site, and services connection costs. Whilst the cost of the “building” can be easily determined, the cost of the complete project is variable and dependent upon the factors above.

How long does it take from contract to handover?

From purchase of the land to sale of the finished product, BuildFast Property allows 6-9 months per project.

What are some of the more common issues that I can face when developing a duplex development under a Complying Development Certificate (CDC)?

With an efficient due-diligence process, we’re able to avoid the issues that most other developers have to deal with.

We buy the right sites!

With 25+ years’ experience, the BuildFast team has the knowledge and experience to work through any issues that may arise.

How do I know a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) is the right choice for me?

BuildFast has over 25 years of knowledge and experience developing property and will provide a comprehensive assessment of your project to assist with your decision making.

How do I protect myself in the event that the builder or an associated party goes into liquidation, or any other unexpected situations?

By choosing from a panel of well run, financially secure builders. We prefer medium to large sized builders except where a smaller builder has a long-term track record and is personally known to us.

Please refer to the Home Building Compensation Fund (HBCF) page (formerly known as Home Warranty) for further information on their safety net for home owners in NSW faced with incomplete and defective building work carried out by a builder or tradesperson.

How does BuildFast get paid?

We can provide a fixed price design and construction contract through our preferred builders. The builder remunerates BuildFast for design and development management.

What are the benefits of developing under a Complying Development Certificate (CDC)?

By developing under a Complying Development Certificate (CDC), you avoid the need to get a Development Approval (DA) through the relevant local council. This also means that:

  • You are not required to notify neighbours of your development prior to approval
  • You will not be issued with onerous Conditions of Consent from council which can cause a DA to be unviable
  • You can complete your development approximately 50% faster

Can I really bypass the council and not tell my neighbours what I want to do?

YES… and NO! We can bypass the relevant local council and get your development project approved, but we have to tell your neighbours AFTER it is approved. Developing under a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) means there is NO NOTIFICATION PERIOD!

I need finance, can you help me?

Sure thing! We work with specialist finance brokers and will recommend a broker that has experience in your particular circumstances.

I have finance in place, how long would you say it would take for BuildFast to help me source a site and understand the risks so that I am in a position ready to purchase?

Once we know your budget and outcomes we can usually find a suitable site within a few weeks. In certain circumstances we recommend you engage an experienced Buyers Agent who specialises in residential development sites.

Can you take care of the sale of individual dwellings?

Yes – we are licenced real estate agents and can market your property from an early stage. We help many of our clients sell individual dwellings prior to the completion of each build.

We also work with real estate and buyers agents who we know and trust as our focus is on getting the best results for our clients.

Is BuildFast a house and land package, or do I need to find my own block?

We can provide a package or help you with your existing building site. If you have land please send us over the address and we can confirm whether it is possible to carry out a CDC.

Is it possible to make changes to the designs?

Not making changes is generally the most economical way but if you have specific requirements then we can certainly make the changes you need.

Can’t find an answer to your question?

Feel free to get in touch and ask us!

Tell us where you want to build in NSW and we’ll send you a free report on how to build without waiting on council!