Planning FAQs

Solar panels on new house

Planning process

We make decisions on most applications following a legislated set of steps.

Steps in the planning permit process

Planning fees

Download the Planning permit application fees(PDF, 99KB) to see all costs involved in your permit application.

If you are applying for a planning permit that requires you to pay multiple fees, you will only need to pay the highest fee and half (50%) of the other fees.

Request a copy of a title

When lodging a planning permit application you must provide us with a full, current (no older than 60 days) copy of the title for each parcel of land that is a part of the subject site. You can get a copy of a title from LandData and follow these steps:

  1. Create your account
  2. Select Order a copy of a title or plan
  3. Enter the address ad confirm property details
  4. Tick the boxes next to Register search statement and Copy of plan
  5. Select next and follow the prompts.

Note: If a covenant or Section 173 Agreement applies to the land, be sure you request a copy of these documents to submit to us.

If you have trouble, call LandData on 8636 2456, or talk to a solicitor or conveyancer for help.

View the planning scheme

Planning schemes are made up of maps and policies and written clauses. The maps depict where the zones and overlays apply within the planning scheme area.

Surf Coast Shire planning scheme

Get a copy of a planning permit and endorsed plans

Check out the Request for property information page for forms to help you get copies of endorsed plans, planning permits, planning property information and certificate of compliance.

Development plans, reference and incorporated docs

Download our development plans, reference documents and incorporated documents.

Bushfire overlay

Our planning scheme maps show the homes, communities and environments included in the Victorian Government’s Bushfire Management Overlay (BMO).

The BMO is a planning control applied to properties with the potential to be affected by extreme bushfires, and helps make these properties safer and more resilient to bushfire. Planning permits may be required for new uses and developments in the BMO, including new homes.

The new mapping criteria were developed in partnership with the CFA and CSIRO as part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to implement all recommendations of the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission.

Section 173 Agreements

A planning permit might include conditions relating to Section 173 Agreements. Find out about preparing, changing and ending these types of conditions.

Changing covenants or restrictions

It’s not easy to remove a restrictive covenant from a title. It may take considerable time and money, as the public notification process is extensive, and Council may still refuse the application if it receives certain objections. The Removal or variation of a restriction checklist(PDF, 72KB) can help explain the process and what to expect.

Planning register

Visit our Planning applications on public exhibition page to the documents on open applications and make a comment.

Get planning advice

Need more information or have a complex inquiry? You can access Council’s Planners by phone on 5261 0600, by email at, or in person at our planning counter at 1 Merrijig Drive, between 8.30am and 5pm weekdays.

Request written planning advice

Pre Application information(PDF, 141KB)

Checklists and templates

We’ve developed some documents to help you navigate the planning application process.

Checklists, forms and templates

Subdivision Process

We have developed a guide to help you through the subdivision process

Steps in the Subdivision Process(PDF, 78KB)