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  • Another "Granny" flat question

    Hey everyone,

    I know there's a ton of these questions already - and I've read a lot of them but didn't really get a clear answer.

    We are a family of four and since Sept last year the mother in law has moved in with us. We've managed in our four bedroom house, but have now decided to move to a much bigger home in the Hibiscus Coast area of Auckland. Currently about to go unconditional on a 6 bedroom house.

    The new place is a single dwelling. It was built in about 1987.

    The house has three bathrooms (one is an ensuite) and three lounges.

    Long story short, at one end of the ground floor is a bedroom, lounge, bathroom and separate toilet and also a very large laundry. The mother in law is going to use this area of the house as hers. She will still be using the rest of the house, but it's her quiet / own area.

    So the question I have is, if i renovate the laundry - which currently has a laundry sink - could I convert this is a combo laundry/kitchen and not have a problem with the Auckland Council? We aren't after a separate living area - all we want is someone she can cook her own meal if she pleases, to be away from the kids. In reality, she will still probably eat with us in the main kitchen/dining a few times a week. The power / water / rates are all covered by us and she is not paying rent to live here.

    If we can put in a kitchen, replacing the existing old laundry sink and putting in a more modern kitchen type sink - can we have a proper oven installed? Or will we have to settle with a portable bench top mini electric oven).

    Any advice would be much appreciated!

  • #2
    If you want to be 100% legit you need to talk to council and jump through hoops to get it legally a second kitchen. By kitchen of course I mean only the oven is an issue. Stick to microwave and benchtop cooker you can do what you like.
    As it is your family you can just do what you like for now. Worst case scenario is that somebody in the future complains, (can't even imagine why that would happen unless your mum throws wild party's), you would have to remove the oven.
    The only real issue is this:Make sure your insurer agrees to insure the home with the second oven intsalled and make sure you have CCC from the electrician and give a copy to the insurance company.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Bobsyouruncle View Post
      If you want to be 100% legit you need to talk to council and jump through hoops to get it legally a second kitchen. By kitchen of course I mean only the oven is an issue. Stick to microwave and benchtop cooker you can do what you like.
      As it is your family you can just do what you like for now. Worst case scenario is that somebody in the future complains, (can't even imagine why that would happen unless your mum throws wild party's), you would have to remove the oven.
      The only real issue is this:Make sure your insurer agrees to insure the home with the second oven intsalled and make sure you have CCC from the electrician and give a copy to the insurance company.
      If it is a granny flat the planning rules should not apply as it would for a minor dwelling make a discrete inquirey of the planners but dont give address

      building is more straight forward

      Council cannot make you remove lawful work

      Comment


      • #4
        But it's not a granny flat yet it's just a house. That's the whole point I thought of the OP.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Bobsyouruncle View Post
          If you want to be 100% legit you need to talk to council and jump through hoops to get it legally a second kitchen. By kitchen of course I mean only the oven is an issue.

          The oven is not an issue, no consent is required to install an oven, nor is there any need for the council to make it a 'legal' kitchen. As long as the works comply with the building code there is no issue.

          Comment


          • #6
            Discuss with your mother in law if a benchtop oven and a microwave will suffice. My mother has her own freestanding separate house with both full range oven , benchtop oven and microwave but would be quite happy without the hardwired full oven, as she is just cooking for herself generally.
            As for the laundry sink there are some "dual"" alternatives that serve as both a kitchen bench plus laundry sink from many places like Peter Hay kitchens etc.

            Comment


            • #7
              Unless it's MHS or MHU it does matter.
              The current rules are:

              "Auckland City Council does not have a separate category for granny flats or minor dwelling units. This means any flat with a kitchen is considered to be a second household unit, even if it is attached to the existing house. There are rules in the Auckland City Council's District Plan relating to second dwellings. You will have to allow for a certain amount of land per household unit - in particular you will have to cater for private open space and car parking areas. Information relating to the zone you live in and the associated requirements is available from council offices. In some cases, a resource consent may be necessary before a second dwelling can be built."

              Comment


              • #8
                Auckland City Council does not have a separate category for granny flats or minor dwelling units. This means any flat with a kitchen is considered to be a second household unit, even if it is attached to the existing house. There are rules in the Auckland City Council's District Plan relating to second dwellings
                it is not a second dwelling; it is a self contained space within the same household for a member of the same household!

                the problem stems from the defintion that states what a dwelling needs to have which is then used to determine the existence of another dweliing when this is not the intention?

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                • #9
                  So, I did pop into the council this morning and ended up talking with a planner. Mixed messages when I pushed him on it, he basically said if we did install an oven and a kitchen bench in the laundry they would never know, 99% of the time; however he said if someone complained or there was a fire then it would be investigated - however he also said that a warning to get it up to standard would be the standard course of action.

                  He said as its a family and within the same house its a "grey area". However, his view was that the Council would deem it a minor dwelling since its easily able to separated off from the rest of the house by a single door.

                  When I pushed him on what makes it a second dwelling, since we are all part of the same household etc he pointed to the Auckland Unitary plan definition of a dwelling which is:

                  Dwelling Living accommodation used or designed to be used for a residential purpose as a single household residence contained within one or more buildings, and served by a food preparation facility/kitchen. A food preparation facility/kitchen includes all of the following: • means for cooking food, food rinsing, utensil washing and waste water disposal; and • space for food preparation (including a suitable surface) and food storage including a refrigerator or a perishable food storage area capable of being cooled. This definition is nested within the Residential nesting table.

                  I bold and underline the "a"; he stressed thats what makes the difference. A dwelling has "a" as in single food preparation area.

                  To be honest, he left me feeling like if we put in a oven, certified by an electrican nothing would happen.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well all I can tell you is you can't put a second kitchen in, in Auckland, if it has a full oven, unless you involve council.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bobsyouruncle View Post
                      Well all I can tell you is you can't put a second kitchen in, in Auckland, if it has a full oven, unless you involve council.
                      They have no legal basis to be involved. You can have as many ovens in your house as you wish.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ConfusedNZ View Post
                        However, his view was that the Council would deem it a minor dwelling since its easily able to separated off from the rest of the house by a single door.
                        This is not a legal definition of a minor dwelling. A single door is not something that easily separates it from the house because a single door is not a suitable inter-tenancy divide.

                        Originally posted by ConfusedNZ View Post
                        When I pushed him on what makes it a second dwelling, since we are all part of the same household etc he pointed to the Auckland Unitary plan definition of a dwelling which is:

                        Dwelling Living accommodation used or designed to be used for a residential purpose as a single household residence contained within one or more buildings, and served by a food preparation facility/kitchen. A food preparation facility/kitchen includes all of the following: • means for cooking food, food rinsing, utensil washing and waste water disposal; and • space for food preparation (including a suitable surface) and food storage including a refrigerator or a perishable food storage area capable of being cooled. This definition is nested within the Residential nesting table.
                        Well, that is fun. You could then decide that anywhere with a microwave, bucket and chilly bin is a kitchen, and therefor a minor dwelling.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          You can have as many ovens in your house as you wish.
                          Not in different areas, not in Auckland anyway.
                          Unless the law changed but I checked it on council and lawyers sites and seems to be the same as before.

                          Kitchen without oven yes no problem but no oven.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bobsyouruncle View Post
                            Not in different areas, not in Auckland anyway.
                            Unless the law changed but I checked it on council and lawyers sites and seems to be the same as before.

                            Kitchen without oven yes no problem but no oven.
                            Under what law exactly? Installation of an oven is not a consentable activity, so where is it a under council control?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bobsyouruncle View Post
                              Kitchen without oven yes no problem but no oven.
                              Just to add, houses with two kitchens are becoming more common, so I'm struggling to see exactly how this idea that you can't put more ovens into a house has come from;

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