Living in Sheds as Temporary Accommodation

shed american barn live in shedIt is advisable that you consult your local council or private certifier for advice on using a shed as a temporary dwelling whilst you build your home before you make the decision to do so.

The use of a transportable building, caravan or converted shed for a temporary dwelling is often discouraged and is usually only permitted once a building permit or DA has been issued for a permanent dwelling on the land.

A transportable building, caravan or converted shed for a temporary dwelling is usually limited to a maximum period of 2 years or completion of the permanent dwelling, whichever happens sooner. It is usually expected that the temporary dwelling will be de-commissioned after that so that the land does not contain more dwellings than it is approved for.

The types of buildings used as temporary dwellings include:

  • Purpose built buildings (kit homes, a building later converted to a studio, home office, rumpus, granny flat, etc)
  • A steel shed converted to or fitted out as a dwelling.
  • Farm sheds.
  • Transportable building, cabin, site office etc.
  • Caravans and Campers. Mobile homes.

The many circumstances under which people live in a temporary dwelling vary. Temporary dwellings can usually occur on rural or rural residential properties typically for the following reasons:

  • The residents can’t afford to build the permanent dwelling for a period of time.
  • To minimise costs (eg: to avoid renting accommodation) during construction of the permanent dwelling.
  • Security of the building site during construction of a permanent dwelling.

NOTE: Where a temporary dwelling is constructed or occupied without planning, building or health approval, action may be taken by councils to cease the occupation of the temporary dwelling.

Sheds can certainly be used for temporary dwellings by ticking the right boxes with councils. They will require proper washing and toilet facilities which can be connected to the waste system that you need to install for the home.

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