Deck is a very useful thing and further enhances the look of your house. You can sit there, have a barbecue with friends and much more. So we are not surprised that you decided to build one. But the decision to build a deck and having enough money is not enough. We assume you didn’t know this before you started this whole project, but now you are suddenly faced with a lot of laws and regulations that you have to comply with in order to do everything legally.
Since we live in organized cities, we cannot build what we want and where we want. There are many regulations which we must follow in order to government can guarantee the beautiful appearance and functionality of the city. Although zoning laws seem boring and often unnecessary to you, believe us that they are very important. This is exactly what makes our life in the city organized and without it, everything would turn into chaos. We will explain to you exactly what it is and what common issues people have with deck zoning so that you can better prepare in advance.
What is zoning?
Zoning is a series of laws in one region that determine what we can and cannot build. And generally they determine how your property is to be used. In general, the laws mostly concern the height, size and use of property. All these laws exist with the aim of respecting the master plan of how the city will look and function even when expending. That is why you do not have a factory in the residential part and vice versa. All this is very important not only because of the comfort of life but also because of many other factors such as the flow of traffic, parking lots and the like.
Also noise level is a very important factor that must be respected in residential areas. Zones are usually classified as industrial, commercial, agricultural and residential. And within these classifications there are many more subclassifications. The most important factors why zoning must be respected is health and not to bring down the value of real estate. Because who will buy your house if there is a factory next to it? No one would buy such property, of course.
Of course there are certain exceptions, and that is for example when you see an old house in the commercial zone. This most likely means that the building was built before the zoning regulations existed, and therefore does not fall under these laws. As long as owners respect all the laws that apply to such buildings, which were built before the zoning period, they can remain there.
Common issues people have with deck zoning
While it is clear to all of us that zoning is necessary to live a civilized life in city, it does not mean that you will not encounter many problems and obstacles when you want to build a deck. It is very possible that all these rules will change your original idea, but that’s the way it is. We will introduce you to the most common issues people facing in order to know what awaits you and try at least some of these obstacles to solve in advance.
1. Applying for permit
Although the process of applying for a deck permit should not be difficult and complicated, it often happens to take us much more time than we planned. You must first find out who is in charge of issuing perms for decks in your area. Start your search on Internet or go to City Hall. Mostly the services in charge of building permits are located there. What is usually an issue is that you almost certainly don’t have all the necessary documents they require to allow you to make a deck. So you will probably have to go there several times until you get all the necessary documents that explain every detail. After you finally submit everything, you will have to wait until they grant you a permit. What can make the process easier for you is to hire decking professionals, who can do some of the paperwork for you, but they will also need to provide to government permits that they are authorized to do so. What you will get by hiring professionals you could learn more here.
2. Local laws
Although the property is owned by you, you cannot build on it whatever and however you want. While it may sound strange that you need permission on what to do on your property, it is so and you have to obey to all the laws. Although these laws are not written to be strict, your idea of a deck may not fit the laws. So you have to check all the local laws first, and only then plan further.
Because it can happen that you are not allowed to build at all or that you have to make a completely different plan. For example, it may happen that you did everything right, but the fence on the deck is higher than allowed or something similar. If the inspection finds this irregularity, you will have to pay a fine and change it.
3. No construction area
If you live in a part of town where all the houses look identical, it is very possible that you will have to give up on idea to make a deck. You must have seen the neighborhoods many times where it is clear that the master plan was such that everything looks the same. These types of neighborhoods are very popular in Western Europe, but also in the USA and Australia. To keep that look of the neighborhood, you won’t be allowed to add anything, not even a deck. We must disappoint and tell you that if you live in such a neighborhood, you will have to give up on this project.
4. Not enough space
If your house is attached it means it shares walls with neighboring houses. This can often be an issue when you want to build a deck. In that case, it may happen that there is not enough space to fulfill your idea. It is possible that the neighbors will complain and will not allow you to build the deck as big as you want. Then the only solution for you is to change the plan in coordination with the architect and make the deck smaller.
As you can see, you may have certain obstacles when you decide to build a deck if you live in a city. Still, you are likely to succeed in your idea, you just need to be persistent and abide by all the zoning laws.