Vista Access Architects - Blog

Vista Access Architects - Blog

Can an existing dwelling be refurbished to qualify as a 'New Build' under the NDIS SDA (Specialist Disability Accommodation)?

Vista Access Architects are reguarly asked the question, 'Can an existing dwelling be refurbished to qualify as a 'New Build' under the NDIS SDA (Specialist Disability Accommodation)?'

New Old DwellingThe answer to this one in brief is 'Yes, if it can satisfy a number of conditions'. These conditions are listed in the NDIS SDA Price Guide.

To qualify as a 'New Build' under the NDIS SDA, the dwelling needs to comply with the following 5 conditions:

1. Date of Certificate of occupancy; and
2. Total number of residents in the dwelling; and
3. Design requirements of the dwelling; and
4. Density requirements; and
5. Age of the dwelling.

1. Date of Certificate of occupancy.

There are 2 options to comply with this first requirement, noted below as Option A and Option B.

Option A: The very FIRST certificate of occupancy (or equivalent) was issued on or after 1 April 2016. This is important to note the use of the word 'FIRST' in this requirement; or

Option B: The dwelling has been renovated or refurbished and issued with a certificate of occupancy (or equivalent) after 1 April 2016, and:
i) because of the renovation or refurbishment the dwelling meets the Minimum Requirements for a Design Category other than Basic design as noted in the Table 3 of the SDA Price Guide; and
ii) the cost of the refurbishment is equal to or greater than the amount set out in the SDA Price Guide, Appendix F – Minimum Refurbishment Costs for New Builds ($2019/20)

2. Total number of residents in the dwelling.

There are 2 options to comply with this second requirement, noted below as Option A and Option B.

Option A: It is enrolled to house five or fewer long-term residents (excluding support staff); or

Option B: It is the home of a participant who intends to provide SDA to themselves (as a registered provider) and to reside there with the participant’s spouse or de facto partner and children.

3. Design requirements of the dwelling.

All its shared areas, and the majority of its bedrooms and similar sized private rooms comply with the Minimum Requirements for a Design Category other than Basic design set out in Section 2B, Table 3 of the NDIS SDA Price Guide. Note that new requirements for desing apply post 1st July 2021. Read more about the design requirements here.

4. Density requirements.

The SDA developer needs to confirm that the development does not breach the density restrictions for New Builds in SDA Rules 6.14 to 6.17. The density restrictions apply when there are multiple dwellings on a single parcel of land. For more information on Density requirements, read our article on Density requirements or use our SDA Density Calculator.

5. Age of the dwelling.

Fewer than 20 years should have elapsed from the date the certificate of occupancy (or equivalent) in Condition 1 of the Definition of New Build above was issued.

New build requirements

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Disclaimer:
This article is based on Vista Access Architect’s personal interpretation of what constitutes as a new build. This article is not endorsed by the NDIA and users are advised to make their own inquires directly with NDIA.

Location factor for NDIS Specialist Disability Acc...
NDIS SDA Density Calculator