Preliminary Fees, how much would you expect to pay?

Preliminary Fees


Here’s what you can expect to pay upfront before a build can begin.  You’ve heard the term Preliminary Fees and may be wondering what they are, where they fit into the timeline and what you should expect to pay?.

A lot of people seek financial assistance through their preferred lender to fund their new extension or second storey addition. Even with an approved design and building cost, to get full approval and the borrowed money released into your bank account, the finance guys need to see council approved plans and a signed building contract in place.  

The Preliminary Phase is where this happens. It’s broken into two parts, and there are fees associated with each.  For a more detailed list of third party consultants and reports that may be needed to support your application, you can learn more in our blog – Consultant fees.

We advise our clients that generally they can expect to outlay approximately $15k-$25in total for preliminary fees based on budget of around 250k-500k. 

Unfortunately, smaller jobs that require development approval still require costly fees, so its worth considering if it’s feasible. 


Here’s how we break it down. 

Preliminary Phase 1

Development of architectural plans for lodgement Once you are happy with the concept design and cost analysis, it’s time to proceed to developed design. We prepare a full set of DA or CDC drawings for submission and approval. See “What is the difference between a DA & CDC”

The package includes but is not limited to: 

  • Site plan 
  • Survey 
  • Calculations page 
  • Site analysis plan 
  • Elevations 
  • Shadow diagrams 
  • Floor plans 

We also prepare documents that support your plans and lodgement to the council such as: 

  • A Statement of Environmental Effects (SEE) – this details any potential environment impacts the proposed build will have. 
  • Waste Management Plan – this applies to all homes across the country and lists how waste generated onsite will be managed, maintained and disposed of. 
  • BASIX (Building Sustainability Index) – this applies to all residential homes across NSW and is part of the DA process. 

Depending on your property and build, there may be some extra supporting documents required in your application such as a Bushfire Report, Flood Report or Acoustic Report to name a few. our team will put these together also. 

The preparation of drawings and paperwork for lodgement starts at $6500  


Preliminary Phase 2

Council Lodgement of Development Application & Construction Certificate OR Complying Development Consent 

This next step is where we lodge your plans to PCA (Private Certifying Agent) or Council as either a Complying Development Consent (CDC) OR as a Development Application (DA) and Construction Certificate (CC). 

At this stage, we’re planning to get your build underway and will be pulling together this additional documentation:  

  • Engineering plans and certification to confirm your existing home will support the new addition 
  • Sewer Service Diagram  
  • Sydney Water check  
  • Home Warranty Insurance – for all residential works over $20K 
  • Long Service Levy – for all residential works over $20K 
  • And any other supporting documents as required 

The preparation of the lodgement for either CDC or DA/CC starts from $8500 

A tighter cost can be provided once council fees have been quoted. 

What about timings? As a guide, it will take 3-4 months from planning to council approvals. 

Upon approval, you can take your final build cost, councils approvals and your HIA Fixed Price Contract and finalise your finance with your lender. Happy days! 


We hang our hat on delivering a stress-free building experience, which starts from the minute we meet you. If you need any advice or guidance during the planning phase, we’d love to help. 

We’ll show you how to stay on budget while achieving a beautiful architectural solution that adds comfort, style and value to your home. 

Call the Perfect Space today on 02 9907 4568 

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.