The rules and regulations can get a bit complicated.
Your city or township planning department is the best place to start. They are experts regarding the rules and regulations and they deal with these matters routinely. They approve permits based on lawful uses. They will help you or send you to the right department. If you live close enough, go in person. In my area, the municipal planning service is excellent and free. However, you might be thinking that they "play for the other team" and might not be trusted to advise you.
Real estate salespeople often have lots of practical experience in these matters. Perhaps you can ask your salesperson (or their boss) for a free opinion. If they deal in mortgages, their advice could be very useful as they must know about legal uses. For example, no lender would approve money for an illegal use.
A business association like "Hosted Accommodation Australia Ltd." will be helpful but they will have fees for some services.
You don't need a lawyer unless you have legal grounds to dispute an unfavourable decision. Until that time, there is nothing a lawyer can do. (They could charge a fee to advise you...and call the planning department for the same information)
Get free advice from more than one source.
The planning department might be the place to start: http://www.dpcd.vic.gov.au/contact-us
Hosted Accommodation Australia: http://www.hostedaccommodationaustralia.com.au/establishing-an-accommodation-business.asp
· 7 years ago