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[Cob] Building permits in NC for any natural building, especially cob?

john fordice otherfish at
Mon May 12 19:54:58 CDT 2008

Sam / Duncan,
What is the county in NC?

john fordice

On May 12, 2008, at 12:24 PM, Samantha Swensen wrote:

> Hi! We are in the process of readying our site for building our cob  
> house,
> which will be large enough at first for a family of 2 + 2 dogs, but  
> then
> ultimately (in a few years) big enough for a family of 6. We were  
> hoping to
> get building permits and make things all official and be "way- 
> pavers" in our
> area, but so far we have been running into brick wall after brick  
> wall to
> get permits and ensure people will back what we are doing. We do  
> have an
> architect designing for us, but he is not liscensed and doing it  
> mainly as a
> favor to us and a learning project as he works toward his green  
> building
> cert.  We have had very little luck in communicating with the  
> county, who
> have basically told us we ether need to have a licensed contractor  
> doing the
> work, or at least have every structural aspect of the house  
> approved and
> stamped by a licensed engineer.
>   Our question to the listserve is to know if anyone in North  
> Carolina or in
> the southeast in general has had any luck getting building permits  
> for any
> natural building structures (especially cob, because that is the  
> material we
> are working with) large enough for a family residence and by what  
> process
> did you go through to get your plans approved and your permits  
> approved?
> Also, does anyone know about this supposed code rule that if you  
> build for
> less than $30,000 you do not need a permit, regardless of the  
> structure, for
> personal residence?  Or any other shortcuts that are still official  
> and
> reliable we could follow? The one thing we want to avoid is having  
> someone
> tell us later that we have to knock our house down or something.  
> Otherwise,
> we don't care at all about permits. We are self-financing as well.   
> Thanks
> for any help you may be able to give!
>   Sam & Duncan
> -- 
> Slow down and enjoy the journey.
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