A minor residential unit is a small self-contained, detached building on a property that already contains an existing residential house. These units are intended to contribute to a range of housing choices without affecting the character of the area.
There are no restrictions on who can live in a minor residential unit, i.e. it does not have to be a relative or dependent person.
Minor residential units are permitted in the residential zones below if they meet the following requirements:
- The gross floor area of the minor unit is between 35m2 and 80m2
- There is only one other residential unit on the site and the minor unit is detached from it
- The minor unit must have one parking space and the existing residential unit either one or two spaces, depending on the size of the unit. The parking areas of both units must be accessed from the same access.
- The minor unit is single-storey with a maximum height of 5.5m
- The unit must comply with the usual District Plan built form rules for residential units, with the exception of site density and outdoor living space
- The overall site must meet the minimum site area and outdoor living space requirements below:
|Zone||Minimum size of existing site (outside Character Area overlays)||Outdoor living space requirement|
Residential Suburban Density Transition
Residential Banks Peninsula
90m2 total area with a minimum dimension of 5m
This can either be a single continuous area or divided into two separate spaces, as long as the main residential unit and the minor unit each have an area of at least 30m2 which is directly accessible from the unit
|Residential New Neighbourhood||450m2||As above, except that the minimum dimension is 6m|
|Residential Hills||650m2||Not required|
|Residential Large Lot||1,500 - 5,000m2 depending on the location of the site||Not required|
|Residential Small Settlement||1,000m2||Not required|
If the above criteria can’t be met a resource consent will be needed.
Minor residential units on sites within a Character Area overlay will generally require resource consent due to the minimum net site requirements for residential units in Character Areas. In addition, consent will be required if the minor residential unit is:
- visible from the street; or
- located between the road boundary and the main residential unit on the site.
Subdividing minor residential units
There is no specific provision in the District Plan for subdividing minor residential units from the primary residential unit. This means that resource consent would be required to do this, usually as a non-complying activity due to the inability to meet the minimum net site area requirements for standalone residential units.