Updated January 2019
This blog will give you some insight into what costs are involved with a resource consent application. This blog should be used as a guide only; the costs for individual projects vary and should be investigated on a case by case basis.
How much will it cost me?
That is often the question on everyone’s lips. Sometimes it is where the rubber meets the road in terms of whether a project can take place or not.
There are various cost components that will apply in both lodging and implementing a resource consent. Before you are out of the starting blocks in preparing your application, it is worthwhile understanding the costs, and just how much of a dent they will make in the overall budget for the project. No-one likes nasty surprises, particularly when they come late in the piece and hit you in the pocket!
Here are some costs to be aware of if you are lodging a resource consent in the Auckland area.
The first consultant you should speak with in the process is a Planner; they often act as your “project manager” and liaise with the other consultants and the Council on your behalf. They will be able to let you know which other consultants may need to come on board.
An Assessment of Environmental Effects (report) for a project of low to mid-range complexity, related planning investigations, site visit and discussing your proposal with other specialists and the Council from a qualified Planner might cost you between $3,000 - $4,000.
If you are looking to undertake a subdivision a surveyor will need to be involved. A basic scheme plan for a proposal involving one additional lot may cost you between $2000- $4,000 plus GST. This is the plan that will be lodged with your resource consent application for subdivision. Following this, further input from your surveyor will be required to carry out the land transfer survey (this is basically doing the survey work and related tasks which will allow the new certificate of title to be issued). Again, for a small scaled subdivision you would be looking at approximately $9,500 plus GST for this work and a further $1,500 plus GST for the processing of this with Land Information New Zealand (LINZ).
Depending on the complexity of your development, you may need specialists other than only a Planner involved. Your Planner can give you advice on which specialists should be involved. We have provided information on costs of two specialists below, as examples.
If you need a traffic engineer to assess potential traffic effects associated with your development, a basic Traffic Impact Assessment (TIA) can start at $2,500. A report by a civil engineer (for instance on how your proposal may be serviced in relation to stormwater, wastewater and water supply) may set you back $3000-$5,000 for a low to mid-range project.
Some projects require the engagement of a geotechnical engineer to comment on the stability, such as a new building platform. This typically costs $4000-$7,000.
Council Processing Fees
Once your application has been prepared, including any inputs outlined above (if required), you are now ready to lodge your application.
This part of the process will be subject to Council application fees. Essentially these are the fees charged by the Council for the time that Council Officers spend assessing your application and the associated administrative tasks.
Auckland Council requires you to pay a resource consent deposit fee, which is a fee payable when you first submit your resource consent application in to the Council. Additional processing fees will be charged if the costs incurred in processing your application exceed the deposit fee you paid. On the flip side, if your application costs less for the Council to process than the deposit paid, you will be given a refund for the part of the fee that was not used.
Currently the deposit fee charged by Auckland Council for a basic land-use application involving residential activity is $3,000. The deposit fee for non-residential activities is $5,000 and for a basic subdivision is$4,500. You can find more information about Council fees on their website.
Development contributions are something you could have to pay when implementing the development. In essence, these are required when what you are doing may bring about the need for the Council to provide new or improved infrastructure. This might relate to reserves, roads, stormwater or community facilities.
Development contributions are not required in every case, but would be payable for projects such as erecting a minor unit, additional dwelling or subdivision (either rural or urban) creating additional sites.
If you have a site in a residential area and are looking to subdivide off your backyard, as a result of the new rules in the Unitary Plan, you could be looking at development contributions of somewhere in the region of $17,000-$35,000 plus GST Auckland Council has an on-line calculator that you can use to calculate the development contributions for your development on your site.
Contributions related to wastewater or water supply are charged separately through Watercare Services Ltd. These are called Infrastructure Growth Charges (IGC). Similar to development contributions, these would be payable in situations where a new site connects to the publicly reticulated wastewater or water supply network, or similarly a new dwelling doing the same.
The IGC for the metropolitan area is $11,680 plus GST However if you are doing your development in more remote settlements or townships such as Wellsford or Helensville, the costs are considerably higher at $18,556 plus GST and $22,080 plus GST. You can find more information about these contributions on the Watercare website.
Got some questions?
To get a handle on how the resource consent process for your how your potential project will hit you in the pocket, call us for a chat. We can do some investigations and use our extensive industry contacts to ensure you are put completely in the picture!
Anne Hessell is a Senior Planner at Planning Plus and has over 17 years of resource management experience, including involvement with coastal permit applications for over 15 years.
DISCLAIMER: The above is a general discussion on current resource consenting costs in 2018. The figures quoted are indicative only and are not GST inclusive. Fees are subject to change at any time. This indication of costs should not take the place of an official quote, your own investigations or without first obtaining specific specialist advice on the cost components involved in a specific project related to a particular site. Planning Plus takes no responsibility for the accuracy of the above figures.