Landscape Architecture Site Planning and Permitting Requirements

A smart landscape design transforms a dull lot into an extraordinary setting you’ll love. However, before the first shovel full of dirt is turned, you’ve got to get a permit from your community. Your HOA might want to approve the project too. This post guides you through the process, so you’ll stay out of trouble with the local “powers that be” and ensure your project is the success you planned. Step 1: Develop a Site Plan The local planning/development/building department wants to know the current lay of the land before it approves changes. That’s the purpose of a site plan. A site plan is a scale drawing of your property that shows all the important features: North arrow Property lines Lot line dimensions Dimensions between structures Graphical scale showing the scale ratio of the drawing Trees […]

By | January 17th, 2018|Landscape Architecture|0 Comments

Site Plans for Geothermal Heating and Cooling – Ground Digging Permits

Your home’s property sits above a vast field of renewable, inexpensive heat, and the soil or water below is also an efficient place to discharge heat when cooling your home. Digging the Ground horizontally or drilling a well for Geothermal Heating and Cooling – Planning Phase via It will take significant site planning, permitting, dirt work and possibly drilling to tap into the earth’s sustainable geothermal heating and cooling potential. While the process varies slightly among municipalities, you’ll have to take these or similar steps to meet development and building code requirements: Submit a site plan to the planning/development office for approval Obtain approval from state and/or federal environmental agencies for wells that use surface bodies of water Use the approval(s) to obtain permits for excavation, well drilling and geothermal system installation The geothermal heating and cooling contractor you use will work with you on obtaining the necessary approvals and permits, but when you know what steps must be taken, you’ll be sure the project is handled properly from planning to installation of the ground source heat pump (GSHP) system. Here’s more detail on each step: […]

By | January 11th, 2018|Geothermal Heating and Cooling|0 Comments

Changing a Roof Line Cost, Permits & Site Planning

Are you planning to elevate or raise the roof, add a dormer, or change the existing roof line on your property? If so, then read on to explore the costs, planning, and ROI on changing your existing roof architecture and design. via Deforest Architects This guide covers the cost of raising a roof, adding a dormer or changing a roof line on your home when you want to: Raise the roof to create more cubic feet of space beneath it Raise the pitch of a roof from flat or low slope to something steeper for aesthetic and practical reasons Add a second floor (new top story) covering part or all the home Add a dormer to an existing top floor to change the look of your home, add light and gain headroom inside the dormer We give brief details about how each project is pursued. Costs are itemized for those of you that like to know exactly where your remodeling dollars are going. If you prefer the “big picture,” total costs are included after the detailed summary. […]

By | October 31st, 2017|Building Up, Roof Architecture, Roof Design|0 Comments

House Septic System Installation Cost, Planning & Permitting

A septic system is an essential but costly part of building a home. The upside is you won’t have monthly sewer fees or the initial cost of tapping into the municipal sewer, which averages more than $2,000 and can, in many cases, cost more than a sewer connection. via Choice Home Warranty This information in this guide is about septic system planning and installation. We include septic system cost for common septic and drain field systems. A leach field, the term used in many areas, is the same as a drain field. Septic System Planning and Installation Overview Here is an overview for this part of your land development and building process. Then, we’ll break down the steps with itemized costs and timeframes for each part of the process. […]

By | October 1st, 2017|Septic Tank Systems|0 Comments

House Foundation Cost, Permitting and Planning Steps

Foundations are an expensive and critical part of a home. This guide is about how to plan for installing the foundation, the steps of the process and the cost of a foundation. via Madison Home Builders When you’ve read the information and related links, you’ll have a very good estimate of what it will take to get this project underway and completed and what your cost will be. Foundation Plans and Permits To make sure we’re on the same page, let’s look at building a foundation in the bigger picture of developing property for residential building and use. We won’t get bogged down in the details; the links cover those issues, so we can focus on foundations. […]

By | September 30th, 2017|Building Foundation Projects|0 Comments

Land and Site Development Cost: What to Expect Buying & Developing Land

How much does it cost to develop land for building, and what is involved? This guide to residential site development costs outlines the processes involved in separating a lot from a larger parcel and preparing it to build a house on. We’re talking about residential lot development costs; the process is usually more complex and costly for commercial land development. Steps to Preparing Land For Sale Before selling land for residential building, certain steps must be taken. This article is directed to land buyers, but knowing what goes into land development from the seller’s side provides insight into factors that determine how much land costs. It’s more than just “location, location, location.” […]

By | August 27th, 2017|Land Development|0 Comments

Land Survey Cost vs. a Plot Plan – When Do you Need a Land Survey?

There are many reasons to have land surveyed, whether it is property you own or a piece of ground you’re considering buying. This article answers questions about: When to have land surveyed Preparing for a land survey What the survey includes Who pays for the survey The cost of a land survey and factors that determine cost Affordable alternatives to a land survey The Reasons for a Land Survey The surveyor has one of two primary tasks in each surveying job: Precisely establish a parcel’s legal boundaries when it has not been surveyed before, mapping those boundaries and producing a legal description of the boundaries that determine what ground the parcel entails Determine where the boundary lines are on a previously surveyed parcel. For example, the survey might read something like: “Southwest quarter of Northwest quarter (SW ¼ of NW ¼) and East Half of Southeast quarter of Southwest quarter (E½ SE¼ SW¼) of Section four (4), Forest Township, containing ten (10) acres of land, more or less.” A surveyor uses the information to determine what area constitutes the parcel legally described. The surveyor works to find the metal pins used to mark the corners of a surveyed parcel or establish where those pins should be placed. […]

By | August 27th, 2017|Land Surveys|0 Comments

Site Plans in Maricopa County, AZ – How to Get your Plot Plan Approved

According to the Maricopa County Planning and Developing Department, a site plan must be obtained almost any time a building permit is required. We reached out to various building departments, and their representatives said that a site plan is required for any alteration larger than upgrading an electric panel. This general principle holds for local cities too. You can always contact your local building department to determine if your proposed project requires a permit and/or a site plan. This guide will help you get a site plan that Phoenix, Chandler, Mesa, Scottsdale, Glendale, Temple and other metropolitan cities in Arizona require for developing or altering property. If your city doesn’t have a planning department, then a Maricopa County site plan is needed. The terms “site plan”, “plot plan” and “concept plan” are used interchangeably. — You will like encounter the terms when reviewing the documents or hear it when discussing your plans with an architect or public official in Arizona. The topics covered in this guide: What a site plan is When to get a site plan Where to submit the site plan What a Maricopa County site plan or local city site plan must include How to get a site plan or plot plan Getting your site plan approved […]

By | August 22nd, 2017|Plot Plans|0 Comments

Small House Movement: The Cost to Build a Tiny House – What to Expect?

"Yea, I know what a tiny house is, I live in one." Many people who wake up every day in cramped living quarters feel like they ARE living in tiny homes. But there are folks, more and more as the years trickle by, who seek out smaller spaces, wanting a simpler, more efficient life. These [...]

By | August 18th, 2017|Design, Green Home Ideas, Green Living, Tiny Houses|0 Comments

Demolition Projects: Costs, What to Expect, Permitting, Planning – What You Need to Know

How much does it cost to demolish a house? What methods are used for home demolition? What factors affect home demolition cost? — These are the topics covered in this comprehensive guide to home demolition costs that includes important information homeowners need to know about the project. Complete Home Demolition Costs via Fort Carson Mountaineer You’ve got a great piece of property but the old home or building on it must come down to make way for what you want to build. Here are the steps to take and itemized building demolition costs for each. Demolition permits and inspections costs: A qualified building inspector will inspect the home or building to determine the safest, most effective manner to demolish it given the structure’s condition, materials used in its construction and surrounding buildings or streets. An engineer might be required to develop the demolition plan, and that will put the costs at the high end of the spectrum. Range: $220 to $850 Average: $350 […]

By | July 16th, 2017|Demolition Projects|0 Comments