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Skip Navigation LinksDepartment of Housing and Public Works > Construction > Sustainability > Sustainable housing laws > Covenants and body corporate by-laws

 Covenants and body corporate by-laws

Since 1 January 2010, new and some existing covenants and body corporate by-laws have been prevented from banning energy efficient features or fixtures and requiring certain design elements in houses, townhouses, units or enclosed garages.

These laws provide Queenslanders with greater choice by allowing homeowners and builders to choose sustainable building features and designs. Previously, some covenants and body corporate by-laws prohibited or restricted the use of particular energy saving features.

From 1 January 2010, a covenant or by-law cannot prohibit or restrict the installation of a solar hot water system or photovoltaic collectors merely for the purposes of preserving the external appearance of a building. This also applies to by-laws and covenants that were made before 1 January 2010.
Additionally, new covenants and body corporate by-laws are not allowed to control:
  • light roof colours (by only requiring dark colours)
  • energy efficient windows or window treatment e.g. tinting
  • a minimum number of bedrooms or bathrooms
  • orientation of a house in a particular way if that orientation would result in a less energy efficient house
  • minimum floor areas, but a minimum frontage is allowed unless it results in a less energy efficient house.

The body corporate provisions for energy efficient dewllings are regulated through the Building Act 1975  (PDF, 1.74MB).

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Last updated 22 July 2016    Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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