Council is supporting you to live more sustainably at home, at work and in your community.
Bushfire Retrofit Rebates are a part of the award-winning Climate Wise Communities program and are available exclusively for Ku-ring-gai residents living on ember zone and bushfire prone land.
This program is funded by Ku-ring-gai Council's Environmental Levy.
Why are we providing rebates?
Ku-ring-gai is the third most bushfire affected Council area and Climate Change is making bushfire weather more severe and frequent. During a bushfire ember attack is the leading cause (85-90%) of homes that burn down, meaning more homes in Ku-ring-gai are threatened by ember attack than flame or radiant heat.
Where to start
Our Climate Wise Communities Program is the first step in preparing your home, family and pets for severe weather events.
Know your risks and vulnerabilities
Complete Steps 1 & 3 of Council’s Ready Check tool and identify key risks and vulnerabilities to your home. Confirm that your home is within either bushfire-prone land or in the ember zone to be eligible. Embers can travel over 15km ahead of a fire front and start new fires.
Make sure to download the PDF at each step and save it to your computer. The Step 3 pdf is required for your rebate pre-approval application.
Make a bushfire plan
Complete this as your next step. A template can be downloaded from the NSW RFS web page. Scan your bushfire plan, it will form part of your pre-approval application.
Now that you have established what needs to be done to prepare your home for bushfire, apply for a rebate pre-approval, see How to Apply section.
Retrofit work may require development consent from Council (eg. Bushfire prone land, Heritage building etc). Make sure you have consent before applying for pre-approval, see the section at bottom ‘Do I need development consent?’ for more information.
What is a bushfire retrofit?
This aims to harden your home to ember attack, radiant heat, flame, wind and smoke. How you make your home more resilient to bushfire depends on many factors such as distance from bushland, building age, condition, construction and budget.
Council is providing rebates to home owners to offset the costs of making their homes more resilient to bushfires. These rebates are available for a select number of retrofits which are outlined in the table below.
What can I claim?
Council will cover 10% of your total amount spent, to a maximum of one thousand dollars ($1,000) per household every 5 years. The rebate can be applied across all of the rebate categories outlined below.
|Area of house
||Retrofit action (subject to pre-approval)
Replace ridge cap mortar replaced and repointed.
Install fire rated sarking in roof.
Install sprinkler system with independent water source and pump.
Skylights replaced with toughened safety glass.
Skylights sealed with non-combustible lining.
Roof vents and vent pipes covered with metal ember guards.
|Eaves and fascia
||Enclose eaves with bushfire resisting timber or steel.
||Unused chimney sealed with steel.
|Gutters and down pipes
Install metal gutter guards.
Install down pipe plugs.
Replace windows with metal frames and hardware and toughened glass.
Install non-combustible external shutters.
Apply for rebates for windows installed on properties not subjected to a BAL rating via the Energy Smart rebate program only.
Install non-combustible door shutters.
Install non-combustible weather strips.
Install tight fitting door screen with metal (fire resistant) mesh.
||Install a non-combustible garage door with gaps <3mm.
|Sub floor area
||Sub floor space is enclosed with non-combustible material.
|Verandas and decking
Convert from timber to concrete or non-combustible material.
Spacing between decking reduced to 3mm or less.
5000L metal water tank. See Note 5 below and regulation schedule.
Firefighting pump (diesel) connected to tank.
Rebates for water tanks on non-BAL rated properties via Water Smart rebate program only.
Install permanent long hose reels.
|Fence and gate
Replace brush or wooden (other combustible) fence with brick or metal.
Solid metal gate - no lock.
|Low flammability landscaping
*BAL-12.5 (Ember attack) is the minimum standard for retrofits on properties not on bushfire prone land and with a BAL-LOW. Properties with a BAL-12.5 and above must meet the requirements of Planning for Bushfire Protection 2006 and Australian Standard: 3959-2009.
**Climate Wise rebates are available exclusively for Ku-ring-gai residents.
***All rebates will be paid towards invoiced material and installations costs. Rebates are subject to availability of funds and must be pre-approved. Rebates will not be given to works required for either BASIX or development application compliance.
Retrofit work may not require Council’s consent and may be classified as exempt development under the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008.
Homes on bushfire prone land are likely to require either a CDC or DA for retrofits. Council's Bushfire Prone Land page or the NSW Rural Fire Service page What you need to know can help you find out if consent is required.
If your property lies in a heritage conservation area or is a heritage building, retrofit work may require a Complying Development Certificate (CDC), Development Application (DA) or minor works application. Refer to our online mapping tool Web Map. Enter your address in the search bar (top left).
Note: While some retrofit work may be exempt development, the development standards may vary based on your land use zone. To find out the zoning of your property and if your property is a heritage item and/or within a heritage conservation area, refer to our online mapping tool Web Map. Enter your address in the search bar (top left).
While there are restrictions related to works within areas mapped as fire prone, there are a number of exceptions under Part 4 Housing Alterations Code SEPP which could be eligible for the rebate. The rebate could also be used to compliment DA works.
Council can identify whether your work is complying development or requires a development application. This can save you time, money and frustration.
Please note: Rebates will not be given to works required for either BASIX or development application compliance.
Apply for a Pre-Complying Development Consultation application online
Information Sheet for Pre CDC Consultation Service (pdf. 245KB)
How to apply
You will be asked to provide details of your proposed installation, additionally pre-approval will require an inspection of the property and proposed retrofit work. Please use the buttons below to complete the online forms:
Terms and conditions
View our terms and conditions for the Climate Wise rebate program.