Managing your leased or licensed property

Under Brisbane City Council's standard lease terms and conditions, tenants are responsible for managing and maintaining all buildings and fields within their lease area.

Council can provide advice to your organisation on managing and maintaining your leased premise. You may need approval if you want to make any changes, including upgrades and advertising.

Works on a community lease site

Before making any changes to your leased premises, you must ask for Council's approval using the Application for Works on a Community Lease Site online form. You need approval for minor changes (e.g. moving soil), as well as bigger projects, such as building a shed. For more information, read the application for works on a community lease site web page.

Most applications take 20-30 working days from receipt of a complete application to assess and respond. Complex applications may take longer to assess. Keep this in mind when planning your project timeframe.

Local authority approval

As well as getting Council’s approval as your landlord, you may need building approval from Council for development or infrastructure changes to your leased premises.

You need to go through the same building approval process as if you were making the changes on private land.

For staged developments, each development stage requires a separate development application for fee purposes. 

Find out more information on the:

Planning application and development assessment fees may apply. Development assessment fees do not include infrastructure charges.

Contaminated land management

Find out about contaminated land management including:

  • how to determine whether your lease area is on a closed landfill site
  • contaminated land management responsibilities for lessees.

Condition audits


To assist tenants with maintenance of facilities, Council undertakes condition audits of all buildings on leased premises. Audits occur every three to four years.

The condition audit process involves the assessment of all aspects of the building/s including:

  • structural elements such as building foundations, roofs and stairs/ramps
  • legislative requirements such as electrical tagging and testing and fire safety devices
  • general maintenance such as building interior and flooring, plumbing, vegetation, fences and car park areas.

Tenants are provided a copy of the condition audit report. The report should be used to:

  • identify and address any immediate maintenance needed
  • ensure all regular checks are up-to-date
  • plan for maintenance.

The report will provide guidance to the most important items as well as any that are of a health or safety risk.  

When Council requires access to you premises, we will provide appropriate notice to tenants.

Tenants should keep a copy of the latest condition audit report. It should be kept in an accessible location where committee members and relevant maintenance staff can easily refer to it. Tenants should use the report to develop a maintenance and development plan (Word - 195kb) for the premises.

Sports fields

To further support tenants in managing and maintaining their premises, Council undertakes condition audits of sports fields every two years.

The purpose of these audits is to:

  • assist Council to understand the condition of the city's sports fields
  • provide tenants with information to develop a proactive turf management program.

The assessment involves a scientific evaluation (i.e. agronomic assessment) of the sports fields, along with the collection of data to support field performance and safety.

The report summarises the findings of the sports field audit, as well as providing some practical management advice.

Maintenance and development plan

The maintenance and development plan applies to lease holders.

As part of the establishment or renewal of a lease, tenants are required to prepare a maintenance and development plan (Word - 195kb).

The maintenance and development plan is generally for a four year period. It should cover mandatory, planned and unplanned maintenance, including:

  • legislative and lease maintenance requirements
  • general maintenance items
  • sports field maintenance and improvements
  • proposed facility developments
  • extensions.

The information provided in the tenant’s latest condition audit and sports field audit report (if applicable) forms the basis of the maintenance and development plan. Council provides tenants with the most recent audit reports to assist them to complete their maintenance and development plan.

Signs and lighting

If you wish to display any signs or notices on your leased premises, you will need to obtain Council approval. You must also obtain Council's approval before installing or modifying any sport field floodlighting in a leased area. 

If you are planning to install signage or modify lighting to your leased premises, fill in the Application for Works on a Community Lease Site online form.


Under the Natural Assets Local Law 2003, you need Council's approval before cutting or clearing any vegetation from your leased premises.

If you don’t obtain written consent from Council, you may face fines under the local law. The law provides for on-the-spot fines of $500 and maximum penalties for individuals up to $50,000.


If you are planning to alter or add onto your leased building, think about how to 'graffiti proof' it.

Council also encourages you to remove any graffiti from your leased premises as quickly as possible. As a community organisation you can borrow a graffiti removal kit from your local Ward office.

Find out more about graffiti prevention and removal.

If you see graffiti happening or know someone involved in graffiti on a Council leased or licensed property:

Fire ants

The fire ant is a serious pest in Queensland. Even if your property isn't in a restricted fire ant area, you need to be aware of fire ant risk.

Under the Biosecurity Act 2014, all individuals and organisations have a general biosecurity obligation to take all reasonable steps to not spread fire ants. View the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries website to:

  • view the fire ant biosecurity zones
  • learn how prevent the spread of fire ants
  • report the location fire ants.

If you find fire ants on your leased or licensed property, notify Council's Community Facilities Operations Team by phoning Council on 07 3403 8888.

If your property is in a restricted fire ant area, be aware of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) movement controls for high risk materials, particularly soil.

More information

For further advice on managing your leased or licensed property phone Council on 07 3403 8888 and ask to speak to the Community Facilities Operations team.

Last updated: 21 December 2020