Tag Archive for: Planning Application Tips

import yard in Melbourne. Destined for car sales yards and showrooms where they can be sold.

Are you in the process of setting up a business as a Licensed Motor Car Trader (LMCT)? Sounds exciting! Before you can apply for your motor car trader’s licence, and before you start to set up your car yard, there’s another important step you may need to take: that is obtaining a planning permit from your local Council. 

Why do LMCTs often need a Planning Permit?

Zoning Regulations: Different locations across Melbourne and Victoria are zoned for different types of use—residential, commercial, industrial, etc. The zoning of your property may mean that a Planning Permit is required for your car yard..

Other permit triggers: Other factors that may trigger the need for a planning permit are access being proposed onto a main road, vegetation removal, or additional planning overlays that can impact properties. 

What do Councils consider in their assessment?

Land Use Compatibility: This ensures your car yard won’t cause issues like traffic congestion, noise, or environmental problems for the surrounding area.

Development Control: This allows local councils to manage how land is developed if you are proposing any buildings or works, ensuring appropriate bult form outcomes for the locale.

How to apply for a Planning Permit to become a Licensed Motor Car Trader (LMCT)

If you find this list daunting or stressful, AS Planning can help you throughout the Planning Permit application process, please contact us to have a chat.

  1. Check Zoning, Overlay and Other Policy Requirements
    • Reach out to your local Council or check their website to see the zoning and overlay rules for your proposed location.
    • Understand the specific requirements and restrictions in the planning scheme for your area.
  2. Pre-Application Meeting
    • Schedule a meeting with the planning department of your local Council. This can help you identify any potential issues early on and clarify what you need. 
  3. Prepare Your Application
    • Application Form: Get the planning permit application form from your local Council and fill it out, noting some councils preferred online applications
    • Important Supporting Documents: There are documents you will need to include with your application, including a copy of title for the land, plan(s), and a town planning report justifying the use and/or development.. You may also require additional documentation such as a traffic report by a traffic engineer, details of proposed business signage and any other specific information required by your local Council. 
    • Fees: There will be a permit application fee from Council, as well as consultancy fees to factor in for the specialist reports and any professional advice required to support your application. These fees will vary depending on your proposal and the complexity of your application.
  4. Submit Your Application
    • Lodge your completed application and all supporting documents with your local Council.
  5. Council Review and Public Notification
    • The Council will review your application and might ask for further information.
    • Your application may be advertised to the public so neighbours and other stakeholders can give feedback.
  6. Assessment and Decision
    • The Council will consider your car yard application, any public feedback, and decide whether to grant or refuse the permit. They might attach conditions to the permit if it’s approved.
  7. Compliance and Implementation
    • If you get the permit, make sure you follow all the conditions set by the Council.
    • Don’t forget to get any other necessary permits or licenses, like building permits if you’re constructing new structures.

Additional Tips

  • Environmental and Safety Regulations: Make sure your car yard complies with all environmental and safety rules.
  • Business Registration: Ensure your business is registered and meets all legal requirements to operate as an LMCT.
  • Get help with Planning Permit Application: If you need support, AS Planning can assist you through the planning permit application process. Contact us to find out how we can help you. 
  • Written planning advice may be required: It may be that a planning permit is not required for your business. In this instance you may be required to apply for formal written confirmation from your local Council. AS Planning can also assist you with receiving such advice from your local Council in a timely manner. 

By following these steps, you can smoothly navigate the process and get your car yard up and running in compliance with local regulations. Good luck with your application!

Navigating the planning permit process can be daunting, but for those looking to expedite the process, VicSmart offers a streamlined alternative. AS Planning will guide you through the steps of applying for a VicSmart planning permit, highlighting the value of engaging a planning consultant in this efficient approach.

What are VicSmart Planning Permits?

VicSmart is a planning permit process in the state of Victoria. It is designed for straightforward and low-impact planning permit applications. It’s particularly useful for minor developments such as renovations, small extensions, or change of land use, making it an ideal choice for homeowners and small businesses. 

Not all straightforward applications are eligible for the VicSmart process, but rather must meet certain criteria as set out in the Victorian Planning Provisions. Talk to us today to find out if your project is eligible. 

So why do I need a Planning Consultant when using VicSmart?

Engaging a planning consultant can significantly simplify the VicSmart application process. Planning consultants are experts in navigating the intricacies of planning regulations and can ensure your application is complete and compliant with VicSmart requirements. 

Steps to Apply for a VicSmart Planning Permit:

1. Determine Eligibility:

First, assess whether your project qualifies for VicSmart. This typically involves projects with minimal environmental or community impact. Your local Council or a Planning Consultant such as AS Planning can assist with determining eligibility.

2. Pre-Application Consultation:

Consider consulting a planning consultant like AS Planning at this stage to discuss your project’s specifics and receive expert planning advice on the application process.

3. Complete the Application Form:

Gather all necessary documents and information, which can include plans, reports, a copy of title and the completed VicSmart application form available on the VicSmart website.

4. Lodge the Application:

Submit your application, along with the required fee, to your local Council. Remember that a well-prepared application, guided by a planning consultant, can lead to a faster approval.

5. Council Assessment:

Council will assess your application, typically within 10 business days. During this time, they may request additional information or modifications. A  planning consultant can help you respond to Council. 

6. Decision:

Once Council is satisfied with your application, they will issue a decision, which may include conditions or requirements.

7. Appeals:

If you disagree with Council’s decision, you have the right to appeal through the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). A planning consultant can also assist with this process.

What are the benefits of applying for a VicSmart Planning Permit with a Planning Consultant?


Planning consultants can expedite the application process, reducing wait times for approvals.


Their knowledge ensures compliance with local policies and regulations, minimising the risk of delays or refusals from Council.

Peace of Mind:

With a planning consultant by your side, you can navigate the process with confidence, knowing you have expert guidance.

Applying for a VicSmart planning permit in Victoria doesn’t have to be a complex ordeal. 

By following the outlined steps and enlisting the assistance of a planning consultant, you can simplify the process and increase your chances of a smooth and speedy approval. Whether you’re a homeowner planning renovations or a business owner seeking a change of land use, VicSmart can be your friend when it comes to achieving your goals efficiently.

Contact us for assistance with your VicSmart Planning Permit application.

For detailed information and resources, visit the official VicSmart website.