For what kind of house do I need no permit?

I know that this varys from state to state and county but generally, how can I avoid any bureaucracy in the US? 

12 Answers

  • 1 week ago

    You do not need a building permit if you just move a trailer house onto the property.   As long as you leave the wheels on and do not build a foundation it is considered a

    temporary structure.    Alternately you could get a "cabin" delivered and turn that into a house.   Again,   as long as it can be moved it does not need a permit.    You need to check your CC&Rs to make sure doing either is not allowed.   If they say no temporary structures can be used as a place to live then you can not do either of the above.  

  • elhigh
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    This is going to take a lot of research on your part, because you have information that we don't.

    For starters, you know where you are.  In the vast majority of places any permanent domicile for human habitation is going to require a permit, and in inspection once construction is done to ensure that it is safe.  If it doesn't pass, that inspecting agency will have the power to order the place condemned, and then you will have to either bring it up to spec or demolish it.

    There are ways around this.  In some areas a living space below a certain size - usually under 100 square feet, there are variations on this rule so figuring it out is up to you - will not require a permit.  But be aware, 100 square feet is small.  It's 10x10, you'd be living in a garden shed.  You can increase your living size by including a loft (below a certain headroom, that square footage is not included in the official calculation) and put the bed there.  But you would still have to combine the other functions of your home into that 100 sq. ft including bathing, bathroom and kitchen, and someplace to sit when you're not lying down.  It's pretty difficult to do.  You can gain some space by moving certain functions outside, like having an outhouse (yay) for sanitary facilities, an outdoor shower (rather more enthusiastic yay!) and even an outdoor kitchen.

    Some places - most if not all of them, in fact - will require that you get inspected if you're going to make permanent connections to utilities, so if you want flush toilets and a shower indoors, there's no way around it.  

    Essentially, that's a tent with wooden sides.  But people used to do it that way.  Before there was indoor plumbing or electricity, that was essentially every house everywhere.  And some were pretty small.  At the Museum of Appalachia there is a little - LITTLE - cottage a guy lived in for decades, the place is about 6'x7'.  No joke, less than fifty square feet.  It's still on display, you can go look at it.

    The other way is to make it clear that your home is not permanently installed, and is therefore more correctly described as an RV.  This is why so many of the tiny houses you see are built on trailers, it drops them neatly into this one category that all the various agencies can agree is applicable and still kinda-sorta acceptable as a place for people to live.  You don't need to get inspected at all.

    You might have to move the place once in a while to prove that it's not a permanent domicile, but aside from that it works.

    Still difficult to get flush toilets that way though.  Some people go the full RV route and use cassette toilets and just make regular runs to a dumping station, others use so-called composting toilets which according to them are effective and non-stinky, I just know what I'm like after a big bowl of chili and am not keen to try it out.

    One cool thing about the trailer approach is that with careful work you can do a pretty good job of making your home almost entirely self-sufficient, providing its own water and power (although you might need to make a run for more water if you go too long with no rain).

    Anyway.  That's my two bits.  You do you.

  • 1 month ago

    a DOG HOUSE and a CAT HOUSE...

  • 1 month ago

    You cannot avoid bureaucracies.  

    They make sure you have to deal with them. 

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  • 1 month ago

    A Bird House, An igloo, A tree house, A doll house, Back in the day grandpappy had an out house! And nether seventies there was grate disco song title “ She’s A Brickhouse” Lol.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    On wheels. However you do need a trailer license so there is SOME involvement.   Or a tin shack on a farmer's field that he gives you a spot. No running water, no electricity, no telephone, no TV. no nothing.  Then you have to move if the farmer wants that land to plant crops. So you need a wilderness corner and build an outhouse.  Baths come when it rains.  Yeah, live like a hill billy.  

    . You could also live in a tent. Some of the homeless make it their home. They also use them as HOSPITAL EMERGENCY WARDS OVERFLOW. It has no foundation so is not a permanent structure.

    Especially after this "HOAX" is over they want to find out how many people are living.

  • 1 month ago

    One on wheels.   ....

  • ?
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    The only way to avoid bureaucracy wpuld be to go somewhere not ruled over by any government. Otherwise, you'll always need permits and permission to build anything big enough to live in. In theory, of course, you can build whatever you like, and as long as a government official doesnt come around to check the place is up to code, you'll be fine. But unless ypu build way off the grid, someone will always come knocking sooner or later

  • 1 month ago

    KIND doesn't matter. LOCATION and SIZE matter. The only way you will legally build anything large enough to live in without a permit is to find somewhere that permits don't exist.

  • 1 month ago

    Most all places need permits. But very rural, out in the boonies or wilderness it isn't an issue.

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