Short Stay Accommodation and Serviced Apartments

Are you planning to operate short-term accommodation in the Town (e.g. Airbnb, Stayz)?

Council’s Local Planning Policy 31 - Serviced Apartments and Residential Buildings including Short Term Accommodation outlines the requirements for the location and management of short-term accommodation within the Town. The policy aims to ensure provision of these accommodation types is appropriate for the needs of both residents and visitors.

Why do we need this policy?

Due to its proximity to the Perth CBD, Curtin University, Perth Airport and the Swan River, as well as the range of commercial, retail and educational opportunities within the Town, there has been growing demand for more diverse forms of accommodation in recent years. It is important to ensure the provision of short-term accommodation contributes positively to the Town and its residents. This policy allows the Town to assess proposals for short-term accommodation to ensure they are suitably located and managed to minimise potential amenity impacts on surrounding areas, while maximising their convenience and suitability for potential visitors. 

 

What are the different types of short-term accommodation covered by the policy?

Different types of short-term accommodation are classified according to their use and management as follows:

Bed and Breakfast

Means a dwelling:

  1. Used by a resident of the dwelling to provide short-term accommodation, including breakfast, on a commercial basis for not more than 4 adult persons or one family; and 
  2. Containing not more than 2 guest bedrooms

Lodging House

Has the same meaning as defined in the Health Act 1911, namely any building or structure, permanent or otherwise, and any part thereof, in which provision is made for lodging or boarding more than six persons, exclusive of the family of the keeper thereof, for hire or reward; but the term does not include- 

  1. Premises licensed under a publican’s general licence, limited hotel licence, or
  2. Wayside-house licence, granted under the Licensing Act 1912;
  3. Residential accommodation for students in a non-government school within the meaning of the School Education Act 1999; or
  4. Any building comprising residential flats.

Examples of Lodging Houses include youth hostels, guesthouses, boarding houses, backpackers and workers accommodation and any other form of Residential Building proposed or capable of providing accommodation for 7 or more guests/occupants, whether on a short term commercial basis or a long term basis. 

Applications seeking approval for a building determined by the Council as capable of providing accommodation for 7 or more persons who do not comprise a single family, shall be assessed as a Lodging House under the provisions of the Policy. 

Serviced Apartment(s)

Means a group of units or apartments providing - 

  1. Self-contained temporary accommodation for guests; and
  2. Any associated reception or recreational facilities. 

Examples include complexes of two or more units that are commonly maintained and operated, and are furnished and equipped to be occupied in a manner similar to Multiple Dwellings but on a temporary basis. Serviced Apartments will usually be provided with laundry and cleaning services, with or without other ancillary amenities. 

Applications which seek the use of an individual dwelling for the provision of accommodation on a short term basis where the maintenance and management of the accommodation of other units (although generally not supported by the Council) shall be classified as Short Term Accommodation.

Short Term Accommodation

Means a Residential Building occupied on a short term/temporary basis by no more than 6 persons that do not comprise a single family at any one time; and excludes a Lodging House, Bed and Breakfast accommodation and Serviced Apartments. 

Note that hotel and motel are defined and listed as separate land use classifications and are not dealt with by this policy. 

 

Do I need approval from the Town to operate short-term accommodation?

Yes - development approval is required for all types of short-term accommodation in all zones within the Town. 

 

Where can short-term accommodation be located in the Town?

Council will only support short-term accommodation where they are able to satisfy at least two of the following criteria:

  1. Are on a Primary, District or Local Distributor road (e.g. Shepperton Road, Berwick Street, Jarrah Road);
  2. Are within 400m of a train station or high frequency bus route stop (services running at least every 15 minutes during weekday peak periods);
  3. Are within 400 metres of an area of tourist potential as determined by the Town, such as adjacent to the Swan River foreshore and major sporting/entertainment complexes;
  4. Are within 400 metres of a District Centre zone, Commercial zone or other location providing convenience shopping and access to everyday goods and services; 
  5. Are within 800 metres of a higher education provider (TAFE or University campus), where the proposal is for Short Term Accommodation to house students. 

 

Can I use my apartment or unit for short-term accommodation?

The Council will generally not support conversion of single apartments (multiple dwellings) into short-term accommodation, as these types of proposals have potential for negative impacts and conflicts with permanent residents of other apartments. Applications proposing conversion of single apartments into short-term accommodation will be subject to additional location and design requirements outlined in the Policy. 

For  units (grouped dwellings), the applicant must demonstrate that the amenity of occupants of adjacent units in the complex will not be adversely affected by the proposal in terms of noise, interruption, access or other impacts. 

Note that for strata-titled developments appropriate by-laws are to be entered into the strata management statement acknowledging the type and nature of the accommodation, this also ensures future and prospective owners of the existence of the accommodation within the development. 

 

Do I need to provide parking for my proposal?

Yes - the amount of parking to be provided should be in accordance with the Town’s Local Planning Policy 23 - Car Parking. All resident, guest, staff or visitor car parking associated with the accommodation must be contained on site. Parking of vehicles on the street or Council verge areas is not permitted. 

For serviced apartment proposals, provision for the parking of delivery, service and maintenance vehicles must be included. Where the proposal includes a combination of permanent dwellings and serviced apartments, the parking area for permanent residents and their visitors must be clearly separated from the parking area for the serviced apartments. 

Management of car parking must be detailed in the Management Plan submitted with the application. 

 

Will my neighbours be notified about my intention to operate short-term accommodation?

Any proposal for short-term accommodation must be advertised in accordance with the Town’s Local Planning Policy 37 - Community Consultation on Planning Proposals. Proposals will be advertised to adjoining properties for a minimum period of 14 days.

For more information, refer to the Town’s Local Planning Policy 37 - Community Consultation on Planning Proposals

 

What information do I need to provide with my application for development approval?

Please refer to the Application for Development Approval Checklist - Commercial Development to ensure all the required information is submitted as part of your application.

In addition the following information is required to be submitted for short-term accommodation proposals:

  • A cover letter outlining the details of the proposal, including but not limited to the following information:
    • Suitability of the proposed location for short-term accommodation;
    • Justification of how and why the proposal will be compatible with the adjoining area and its consistency with the objectives and provisions of the policy;
  • A Management Plan (all proposals) provided detailed information on management of the premises including but not limited to the following:
    • Name and contact details of the owner, manager and other persons responsible for management or servicing of the premises, including contact details;
    • Measures used to control noise and other disturbances;
    • Complaints management procedures;
    • Security of guests, residents and visitors;
    • Car parking management information;
    • House Rules / Code of Conduct for guests.

A Management Plan template is included as an Appendix to LPP31.

  • Servicing Strategy (Serviced Apartments only) detailing the level of servicing of the proposal, including but not limited to the following:
    • Opening hours for guest check in/check out;
    • Complaints management procedures;
    • Type or extent of room service to be offered;
    • Company name and relevant experience of management/operator;
    • Management and accommodation of servicing vehicles within the context of overall car parking for the development. 

 

Will I need to reapply in the future?

Yes – the initial approval period for short term accommodation proposals is 12 months (although an extended timeframe may be considered for applications involving the construction of a new building). Applicants should update management plans and other supporting documents/evidence as appropriate when reapplying to extend the approval.

Similarly, a fresh approval must be obtained from the Town in the event that ownership/operation of the short term accommodation changes.  

 

Is there any other policy/legislation I need to comply with?

Yes, depending on the type of short-term accommodation proposed you may be required to comply with the Building Code of Australia, Strata Titles Act 1985, Health Act 1911 and Town of Victoria Park Health Local Law. Further information on these is provided as an appendix to the Policy. The Town also recommends landowners/operators seek independent legal advice regarding the use and management of short-term accommodation.