What is the difference between a building permit and a planning permit?

  • Building permits relate specifically to the carrying out of building work.  Building permits ensure that all building work complies with the Building Regulations and are safe.  However, there are times when a planning permit may also be required.
  • Planning permits are legal documents giving permission for a land use or development, and may be required by your local council.  If a planning permit is required, it must be obtained before a building permit can be issued.
  • A planning permit does not remove the need to obtain a building permit.
  • The best way to find out whether you need a planning permit is to contact Council’s Planning office

Do I need a building permit?

The Building Act 1993 (the Act) and Building Regulations 2018 (the Regulations) legislate that all building work is subject to the issue of a building permit, unless an exemption exists for the proposed work under the Regulations. This includes some minor non-structural alterations and repair or maintenance work.  The link below will provide further information:

When is a Building Permit required (PDF, 207 KB)

Report and Consent Forms

Can I build a shed on my land?

Applications relating to building a shed on vacant allotments in General Residential Zone (GRZ), Low Density Residential Zone (LDRZ) and Rural Living Zone cannot be approved.

Requests to build sheds on vacant land in other zones will only be considered if the use is allowed by the Mansfield Planning Scheme.  If not being built for these purposes, a building permit must already have been issued for a dwelling for this to occur.

Habitation of a shed in Victoria is an offence under the Building Act.

Do I need a building permit for my pool or spa?

In Victoria, all swimming pools and spas with a water depth of more than 300mm (30cm) must have safety barriers around them to restrict access of young children to the pool area.  The link below explains this more fully, and the related building permit requirements.

How do I register my pool or spa?

You can register your swimming pool or spa by completing the online registration form or downloading a printable form and e-mailing it to us at     The registration fee of $32.32 is applicable. An information search fee may be applicable but will be waived if Council can easily determine the swimming pool or spa construction date using its existing permit data base.  If, however, further investigation is required to determine the construction date, an additional fee of $47.95 may be applicable.

Swimming Pool or Spa Registration Form

Do I need a building permit for a fence?

Sometimes a building permit is required for a fence.  Some fences are exempted from the need for a building permit.  Contact a building surveyor to check.. 


  • Front Fence

    A front fence constructed of timber, palings or colorbond must not exceed a height of 1.5 metres or 1 metre if it is within 9 metres of a street intersection. A building permit is required for any front fence higher than specified above, or for any brick or masonry fence higher than 1.2metres.

    You need to also check your title to ensure that there are no fencing covenants on the property. For example, no fence to be built or a certain height and type of fence may be determined.

  • Side Fence

    Side and rear fences constructed of timber, palings or colorbond must not exceed a height of 2 metres, unless the fence (or part of a fence) is within 3 metres of a street alignment (in which case the height must not exceed 1.5metres).

    Check your title for boundary particulars and consult with a land surveyor if unsure.

    Consult with your neighbour regarding price, cost sharing arrangements and style.

  • Fencing Disputes

    If neighbours cannot agree on a boundary fence between their properties, this becomes a ‘civil’ issue and not a council issue. If there is a dispute and you cannot agree, this is a civil matter and you may need to seek legal advice from a solicitor. Council will not be involved in this matter.
  • Fencing between Private Land and Council Land

    Please put this request in writing. Council will then consider the type of fence and the total cost of erecting the fence.
  • Adjoining Property Owner Details

    In accordance with the Fences Act 1968 and the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014, Council can only provide the name and mailing address of adjoining property owners for the purpose of fencing enquiries. A 'Request for Information - Fencing' form must be completed and returned to Council’s Revenue Unit.

    In response, Council will provide the name and mailing address of the neighbour which can only be used in relation to the fencing matter stated on the application. No other personal information will be provided.

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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 May, 2022 - 13:25