Waipa (December 2010)

Many Waipa landowners loose subdivision opportunities

For some time now we have been watching Waipa District Council as they moved to tighten up rural subdivision along with other Councils in the region.  These include Waikato, Hauraki and Western Bay of Plenty who all have changes imminent now.

Waipa have now moved one step closer by releasing their Draft Proposed District Plan to the public.  This may hold some surprises for those who haven’t been monitoring the process. 

Significant opportunities that many landowners currently enjoy will be lost when this plan completes the public consultation phase and becomes law.  That won’t be too far away now and, although you have the right to comment, I would be surprised if the public can change the proposal significantly.  You are able to make comments on the Draft right now and formal submissions when the Plan is publicly notified early in the New Year.

The major change that affects many is the withdrawal of the ‘long association’ rule. This enabled those with more than 15 years association with the block to subdivide a new lot.  Initially they suggested toughening up the criteria for this rule but it is now proposed to disappear.

Currently we can still obtain consent for these subdivisions but time is really limited now and Resource Consent must be finalised before the public process is completed.  Fortunately the entire subdivision process doesn’t need to be finished immediately.  It can be extended over eight years making the initial cost of securing your rights more affordable.

It is also not too late to take advantage of other rules such as the 25ha lot size and ability to create a new title around an existing surplus house on your property.  Many landowners appreciate the advantage of doing this to provide their families with options in relation to ownership and development of their land.  If you want flexibility in how you deal with your asset in the future you must act now to secure your current rights while they are still available to you.

As Waipa District Council move to protect the quality soils, they are providing subdivision opportunities for those with significant natural areas on their properties.  These areas include wetlands, stream and river margins and native bush.   

With rules like this proposed it’s no wonder I am regularly being approached by many to explain the situation and get Council approval for their subdivisions before it becomes impossible to achieve.  For further advice you should urgently contact a professional surveying company very familiar with these proposals.

Brent Trail, Managing Director of Surveying Services, specialises in resource consent applications for subdivisions across the Waikato, Bay of Plenty, and Coromandel.  For further information call 0800 268 632 or email


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