Homesteading With Code Requirements

| 5/2/2016 11:27:00 AM

Tags: building codes, government, home construction, do it yourself projects, cabins, off grid living, remote living, Bruce McElmurray, Colorado,

Our home with spring snow.

When we built our current home in 1992, there were very few rules and codes that could damage or destroy our dream of doing most of the work in building our cabin ourselves. There were only two codes that we had to comply with, and they were the electrical code and septic tank permit.

The electrical code required an open wall inspection, closed wall inspection and final inspection and the septic tank installation had to be approved by the county health officer.

Today things have changed. Being able to build without numerous permits seems to be a thing of the past. We look back fondly at not having to endure lots of paperwork to build our home. Times like that are rapidly disappearing and those who build now must endure permits, inspections, delays and forced compliance. The dream of building your own home could be more complicated than just knowing construction techniques nowadays.

Then and Now

I recently had the opportunity to talk to a person who also has a dream of being their own contractor like we had done so many years ago. This person now must comply with codes and endless permits and the result is they are weighed down with bureaucratic paperwork which takes some of the enjoyment out of the experience of being your own contractor.

In our case, we had the shell home built by a local contractor because we lived back east in Pennsylvania and couldn’t get enough time off work to do that aspect ourselves. Back then, we were not burdened by expensive permits, bludgeoning codes and multiple compliance inspections.

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