U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Oregon
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
 
 
Old 07-17-2008, 03:30 PM
 
Location: Chuckey, TN
24 posts, read 100,183 times
Reputation: 41

Advertisements

Hi folks!
I and my boyfriend plan to move to the Oregon, buy some acreage in a very rural area, and build a house from cob. We didn't pick the county yet because of the following - how we can found out what county doesn't have a building codes of just have a little? I know there are some areas in US that county doesn't issue those rules for building and people can build homes from everything they want - cob, straw bale, earthbags, mix.. We want as much freedom as possible and some restrictions will not allow us to have it.
I will greatly appreciate if someone can point it out this question to me and help with finding the needed information.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 07-17-2008, 08:14 PM
Status: "Sweater and boot weather" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley
4,199 posts, read 8,157,494 times
Reputation: 3396
The populated counties in Oregon have pretty strict land use and zoning laws - it's one of the things that makes the state what it is. Most counties follow the ICC (International Code Council), although maybe not always the very latest one and sometimes with exceptions. That doesn't mean you can't build the way you want, but it does mean permits and inspections. I've seen maybe 10-20 straw bale houses and maybe 3 earth houses on various solar/green home tours, so I know those pass. I've never seen a cob house, though.

And you need to be a little more specific about where you want to live - on the wet/green side or n the high desert side? Will you be looking for jobs, and what kind of job?

You'd probably be better off asking this in the general Oregon forum.

EDIT: here's an Oregon company which is involved in cob houses:
http://www.cobcottage.com/whatwedo
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-18-2008, 03:33 PM
 
Location: Jax
8,204 posts, read 23,784,125 times
Reputation: 3188
Let's go ahead and move this to Oregon since it is location-specific.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-19-2008, 01:29 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW / CO / SA TX / Thailand
11,162 posts, read 18,539,692 times
Reputation: 8023
Quote:
Originally Posted by riveree View Post
Let's go ahead and move this to Oregon since it is location-specific.
or... move the cob house to Montana where they don't have building codes (except, electrical and septic, AFAIK)

I'm sure there are quite a few cob homes in OR, but, the easiest thing is to build a shop with and apartment or place a mobile home on the property to get occupancy, then... after the inspector leaves... build an auxiliary structure (cob house). One advantage of this approach... getting a conventional loan on the permitted structure to fund your cob home.

for a homeschool project we built a rural 'chalet' over a 3 bay shop (similar to swiss house with barn in basement) We made it eco friendly, passive solar, partial earth sheltered, and only spent $60k on it, but the place appraised for $188,000. We took the extra $$ and bought a commercial building that returned $2800/month income (oh boy !!... no more job required )

but... you could use the dough to build the cob, then rent out the structure and live in your cob. Check the zoning, you may need to call the renters 'boarders' (provide them with one meal / day) and only have a cooking range in one of the places to comply. You won't be able to borrow against the cob, but it can be a good idea to use 'cheap' home equity for other investments, otherwise you have a pile of cash tied up making no money for you.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-20-2008, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Denver
1,084 posts, read 2,890,183 times
Reputation: 454
Default cob or straw bale houses

Maybe I misunderstand here, but I think there are better ways to build straw bale, cob houses, etc than dishonestly. A call or visit to local building and planning office is the best way to start, bring a rough drawing of the plans and expect to schedule some time with a plan reviewer going over the basics. The IBC, whatever version is used, is available to everyone and is a starting point.

There are very good internet sites and books on how to work with building inspectors to do it legally. Things like making a home water tight, weather repellent, safely wired, and installing safe heating systems are the reasons inspectors exist. You may think you will never sell the house but if you do, the lack of a code compliant house is a liability risk. A false disclosure statement is a reason to sue the seller in most states. Also you can expect the lenders to crack down on fraudulently obtained loans given the current state of the mortgage industry.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-20-2008, 06:52 PM
Status: "Sweater and boot weather" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley
4,199 posts, read 8,157,494 times
Reputation: 3396
I don't think the OP was asking how to circumvent codes, but where to move that codes either didn't exist or were very minimal.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-20-2008, 07:08 PM
 
Location: Salem, OR
10,927 posts, read 18,576,045 times
Reputation: 6854
There are standard building codes for the state and then each county might have some different requirements. I don't think the material is as big of a deal as how it is constructed. I know we have straw bale homes here.

You might want to email the building codes divison and ask them what the rules and regulations are about cob homes. http://www.cbs.state.or.us/bcd/ is the website.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-17-2011, 02:05 AM
 
2 posts, read 32,794 times
Reputation: 12
A good thing to look for in the codes are Owner Builder exemptions, here is one from the county I plan to buiild in:

3.
Owner/Builder Exemption * Owner/Builder Definition: For the purpose of this section shall mean
an individual person and members of that person's immediate family, but shall not include corporations and
their agents, partnerships and their agents, non*profit corporations and their agents, and all persons who
intend to construct a private residence for sale, lease or rental to other persons. This section shall not
prohibit any Owner/Builder from contracting any part of the construction of the individual's home, in
conformance to R.C.W. Chapter 18.27, relating to general contractors and specialty contractors.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-17-2011, 02:08 AM
 
2 posts, read 32,794 times
Reputation: 12
A good thing to hunt for in your building codes are Owner Builder exemptions.

3.
Owner/Builder Exemption * Owner/Builder Definition: For the purpose of this section shall mean
an individual person and members of that person's immediate family, but shall not include corporations and
their agents, partnerships and their agents, non*profit corporations and their agents, and all persons who
intend to construct a private residence for sale, lease or rental to other persons. This section shall not
prohibit any Owner/Builder from contracting any part of the construction of the individual's home, in
conformance to R.C.W. Chapter 18.27, relating to general contractors and specialty contractors.
Residence * Group R, Division 3, as defined by 1982 edition of the U.B.C. relating only to detached single
family dwellings, occupied by an owner*builder, and shall specifically not include structures which are
used for providing services and goods for sale to members of the public, lodging to persons, for
compensation, or structures which are used in the manufacture of goods intended for sale to the public.
A building permit, inspection fee, and inspections shall not be required for an owner/builder residence. The
owner/builder has the option of requesting building code plan reviews and inspections conforming to
Section 2 Uniform Codes and Standards Stevens County Ordinance 01*1980 and pay fees in accordance to
the established fee schedule (Resolution 132*1984), or requesting an owner/builder:
(a)
An owner/builder structure shall be separated by a minimum of 100 feet from any occupancy rated
structure or external property line.
(b)
An owner/builder record of notice shall be filed with the Building Department and the County
who shall make the notice a part of the permanent deed of record of the property. A recording process fee
of $20.00 is required. The owner/builder shall sign a statement acknowledging that the individual
understands and meets all requirements of this section. (Attachment #1) [Fee modified by Resolution of
BOCC * see current fee schedule.]
(c)
No more than one permit shall be issued to that person in any five*year period.
(d)
Exemption from the permit requirements of this code shall not be deemed to grant authorization
for any work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of this code or any other laws or
ordinance. Such other department review and compliance will include, but not be limited to the following:
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-17-2011, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
3,721 posts, read 4,296,635 times
Reputation: 3993
Quote:
Originally Posted by rangerrick2 View Post
A good thing to hunt for in your building codes are Owner Builder exemptions.
I think the OP was interested in building in Oregon, where such exemptions do not exist. The only residential permit exemptions in Oregon are for nonhabitable accessory structures under 200 square feet, tents under 500 square feet, and above ground pools. There is an exemption for agricultural buildings, but the code standards make it plain that mixed occupancy (residential) dumps you right back into permit requirements.

It is not legal for any county in Oregon to adopt building codes less restrictive than the state code.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2011 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Oregon
View detailed profiles of:

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top