He rauemi whakaaetanga māku

Do I need a resource consent?

The District Plan outlines what you as a homeowner are able to do on your property. Undertaking projects such as building a house or subdividing land can impact on the surrounding environment and other people and may require resource consent. 

It's a good idea to talk to us about your plans before your project starts, as you may be able to plan your project in such a way that a resource consent will not be required.

You will need to apply for a resource consent when an activity is not permitted by rules in our New Plymouth District Plan.

  • Subdividing land always requires a resource consent, even if you’re only adjusting a boundary and no additional lots are created.
  • Resource consents are also needed if you want to use your land for activities that are not listed as permitted activities in the District Plan, or that do not comply with permitted activity conditions.

District Plan rules and provisions

Resource consent process


Need advice?

We provide a free Duty Planner service where you can speak to one of our planners who can provide direction on the District Plan and what rules may apply to your project. Contact us for more information.

Contact us

Resource Management Act

The Resource Management Act groups activities that might affect the environment into five categories. These categories also explain how NPDC will treat a resource consent application.


Certificate of compliance

If you want confirmation that your intended activity is permitted under the District Plan and can be carried out lawfully without a resource consent, you can apply for a certificate of compliance.

People often get a certificate of compliance to provide certainty, as it gives them up to five years to carry out the activity even if the District Plan changes in that time and makes the activity non-permitted. 

A certificate of compliance can also be useful when applying for finance as under Section 139 of the Resource Management Act 1991, a certificate of compliance is deemed to be a resource consent.

Application for a certificate of compliance form 

Existing use certificate

An existing use certificate is required to confirm the right to use land for a use that was lawfully established before the relevant rule in the District Plan became operative or the proposed plan was notified, and the effects of the use are the same or similar in character, intensity, and scale to those which existed.

Alternatively an existing use certificate can be issued where the land use was lawfully established by way of a designation and the effects of the use are the same or similar in character, intensity, and scale to those which existed before the designation was removed. Supporting information may be required to determine whether a certificate is issued.

An existing use certificate is different from a certificate of compliance, as an existing use may not comply with the current rules of the District Plan.  An existing use certificate is treated as resource consent.

Existing use certificate form


Note: Only the courts can issue binding interpretations of the Resource Management Act. Indications and guidelines issued by us are provided with the intention of helping people to understand the legislation. They are, however, offered on a no liability basis, and in any particular case those concerned should consult their own legal advisers.