Category Archives: Arizona

10/14 Coconino County, Arizona invites the public to discuss draft of tiny house zoning & coding rules

Coconino County, AZ community development logoCoconino County Community Development is hosting an open house on the draft permitting process for tiny houses on Tuesday, Oct. 18. The event is open to the public to learn about the draft policy and to provide feedback before it is finalized later this month.

The open house will be at Willow Bend Environmental Education Center, 703 E. Sawmill Road from 3:30 to 5 p.m.

Source for the event: http://azdailysun.com/news/local/coconino-county-hosts-open-house-on-tiny-home-rules/article_9653d1dd-d2a5-521b-9ad9-86fa43641278.html

Here is the draft (note: these rules have not been yet adopted):

Permitting Regulations for Tiny Houses in Coconino County
Draft- August 19, 2016

Definition: Coconino County Community Development defines a Tiny House as a house smaller than 400 square feet; it can be site-built, partially site-built, or on an approved trailer. Houses shall not be smaller than 200 square feet.

Zoning Code Requirements for Tiny Houses:

  • Site built tiny houses built on an approved foundation system shall be permitted in zones
    allowing detached single family dwellings; must meet Community Development regulations for Tiny Houses
  • Tiny houses built on trailers, where the suspension/axle components have been removed and the chassis permanently attached on an approved foundation shall be permitted in zones allowing detached single family dwellings; must meet Community Development regulations for Tiny Houses
  • Tiny houses on mobile chassis where the suspension/axle components remain are considered semi-permanent and the chassis shall be attached on an approved foundation system, and shall be permitted in zones allowing for manufactured and mobile homes; must meet Community Development regulations for Tiny Houses
  • Tiny houses licensed as Travel Vehicles by the State of Arizona are non-permanent housing and must be self-contained, these shall be permitted for uses similar to recreation vehicles; these homes fall under ADOT jurisdiction
  • Site built tiny houses or tiny houses on trailers where the suspension/axle components have
    been removed and the chassis permanently attached on an approved foundation, and meeting all other multifamily zoning and Community Development Tiny House requirements, shall be permitted in multifamily zoning
  • Site built tiny houses, or tiny houses on trailers where the suspension/axle components have been removed and the chassis permanently attached on an approved foundation, and meeting all other Accessory Dwelling Unit zoning and Community Development Tiny House
    requirements, shall be permitted in zones allowing for Accessory Dwelling Units.

Building Code Requirements for Tiny Houses:

  • Tiny houses shall be built and inspected in accordance with the Coconino County adopted
    building code and ordinance.
  • The house can be partially or entirely built on-site or off-site. If built off-site, it needs to have been inspected and approved by a recognized agency approved by the Building Official. All Tiny Houses on Wheels (THOWs) that are built off-site and brought to Coconino County as a dwelling unit will require a plan review and special inspection by Coconino County Community Development to ensure the structural and life safety aspects of the THOW. The County can request additional remodel permits, inspections and engineering of off-site THOWs that have not been inspected and certified by another jurisdiction or third party agency-on a case by case bases.
  • The County has made the following building code adjustments to accommodate tiny houses:
    1. Minimum room dimension is 6’6” with no room smaller than 65 square feet, excluding
      storage areas and bathrooms
    2. Ceiling height is 6’4” in open livable areas, creating a non-obstructed path for egress and
      ingress
    3. Egress and ingress must be provided in sleeping and living areas
    4. Lofts built as storage shall not be permitted as bedrooms, unless meeting ceiling height and egress/ingress requirements
    5. Bathroom and kitchen required, clearance in the front of the toilet needs to be no less than 15” from center of toilet to wall or cabinets
    6. Ladders/lapiers may replace stairways to loft areas (must have uniform run and rises,
      provide stair or ladder detail on plans)
    7. Loft areas used for storage may have reduced fall protection
    8. Number of electrical circuits may be reduced to reflect loads
    9. A minimum of 60 amp electric panel required
    10. Energy Code Concessions: R-15 minimum in framed floors, ceiling insulation and wall
      insulation.
  • Tiny houses built on trailers will need to a have Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin (MSO), or a Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin (MCO), or be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV). Documentation must show the load capacity for the trailer. Before a Certificate of Occupancy can be issued, documentation must be provided to Coconino County Community Development verifying the load of the tiny house is within the load capacity of the trailer.
  • A Certificate of Occupancy will only be issued for tiny houses set on permanent foundations. If the home is removed, the Certificate of Occupancy is no longer valid for the mobile tiny home on wheels. If the tiny home is re-set on a permanent foundation within Coconino County, a foundation permit and special inspection of the tiny house shall be required to obtain a new Certificate of Occupancy.

Wastewater Requirements:

  • Tiny houses set on a permanent foundation will be required to have a wastewater system sized to accommodate the occupancy and fixture count.
  • Tiny houses used as RVs and sited at an RV park must be fully self-contained
  • Compost toilets need to meet ADEQ approved list
  • Graywater needs to be approved for permanently sited tiny houses, to ensure no issues with wastewater system function, as well as environmental considerations like high ground water, wells, and permeability of soils.
  • Tiny Houses on Wheels (THOWs) can include plumbing for graywater-but if permanently sited, the THOWs must go through an approval process

Engineering Division Requirements:

  • Permanently sited Tiny Homes need to meet all Engineering requirements, including drainage, road encroachments, floodplain and roads.

Source for draft code: http://www.coconino.az.gov/DocumentCenter/View/12940

Draft code document: Draft-Coconino County Permitting Regulations for Tiny Houses.pdf

09/22 Coconino County, Arizona crafts new rules for tiny homes

Collin Bass and his dog Lucca in front of their tiny house in Flagstaff, AZ.

Collin Bass and his dog Lucca in front of their tiny house in Flagstaff, AZ. Photo by Jack Bacon.

Collin Bass started building his tiny home south of Lake Mary in January 2015 and has been living in and working on the structure since then, he said.

The home that includes a lofted bed, a woodburning stove and substantial storage, is completely off the grid and uses just a fraction of the energy and water consumed by a regular home, Bass said. His plan is to also add big, screened-in decks and a greenhouse nearby.

The size of the home itself simply forces him to spend most of his time outdoors, which is where he is happiest anyways, Bass said.

“I decided that we waste a lot, we waste trash, we waste space, we waste food. The only thing I could think to do is to be minimalist, to minimize my stamp,” he said.

Bass is among a growing number of residents in Coconino County interested in living small.

Sustainable Building Program Manager Amanda Acheson said she is contacted about once a day by someone interested in building or buying a tiny home, generally defined as a house measuring less than 400 square feet. Responding to that rising demand, the county is crafting a new internal policy that establishes building, zoning and wastewater requirements specifically for these smaller structures.

Still in draft form, the county expects to roll out a final version of the policy in October, Acheson said.

The aim isn’t to layer on more regulation but to create a system that makes it legal to have a tiny home in Coconino County, she said. Tiny homes also align with the county’s development and housing goals, providing an avenue for more affordable and flexible housing that is also resource efficient and environmentally sustainable, Acheson said….

The county will hold an open house on its tiny house policy before adopting the final version. It’s scheduled for Oct. 18 from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., at a location still to be determined. For more information contact the Coconino County Community Development Department at (928) 679-8850.

Read more –
http://azdailysun.com/news/local/county-crafts-new-rules-for-tiny-homes/article_a6571434-8897-570b-8a3d-ffa1cc395ab8.html

Pima County, AZ adopts tiny-house-friendly zoning & building codes

Pima County mapDefinition: A tiny house is a single family dwelling of maximum 400 square feet

Zoning Code Requirements

Tiny houses built on permanent foundations are permitted in any zones allowing detached single family dwellings.

Tiny houses built on a chassis where the suspension/axle components have been removed and the chassis permanently attached on a permanent foundation will be treated as factory-built buildings allowable only in the following zones: CR-3, CR-4, CR-5, TR, ML, SP, CB-1 and CB-2.

Tiny houses on mobile chassis are considered trailers and are only permitted in the following zones: RH, GR-1, SH, MU, CMH1, CMH2 and IR.

Tiny houses regulated by the State of Arizona shall be permitted in zones in accordance with the Arizona defined housing category.

Building Code Requirements

Tiny houses shall be built and inspected in accordance with the Pima County adopted building code.

The house can be partially or entirely built on-site or off-site. If built off-site, it needs to have been permitted by a recognized agency (jurisdiction with a code approval process similar to that of Pima County), or by an approved fabricator accredited by the International Accreditation Services, Inc., to build tiny houses.

The County will waive certain building code minimum standards to accommodate tiny houses in accordance with performance criteria in the ICC Performance Code. The reasoning is that certain minimum standards in the code exist to abate slum housing and to provide safe egress and ingress by fire-fighting personnel for multiple-room larger conventional structures. As these homes are tiny, they provide quicker exiting and occupants are more aware of the physical configuration of the space thereby alleviating fall and means of egress risks. As such, the following code adjustments are provided:

  • Minimum dwelling/room/ceiling height/windows/door/fixture/accessibility dimensions do not apply
  • Ladders may replace stairways to loft areas
  • Loft areas may have reduced fall protection
  • Number of electrical circuits may be reduced to reflect loads
  • Alternative compliance with NFPA 501 for mechanical/electrical systems is recognized

Source – http://webcms.pima.gov/cms/One.aspx?portalId=169&pageId=259596

Read more – http://tucson.com/business/tucson/roomy-enough-tiny-home-movement-takes-first-steps-in-tucson/article_a623fbad-86c5-5e73-a010-cd41a0105955.html

Please note that the city of Phoenix may have requirements that are different from the county’s.

Building code map

Handy map of the US. Just click on your state (in the link, not on the picture) to see which building codes are in effect: http://www.iccsafe.org/about-icc/overview/international-code-adoptions/

International Code Council Map

International Code Council map

Park Model RV Regulations, State-by-State

The RVIA has provided a table showing regulations by state for park model RVs
http://www.rvia.org/UniPop.cfm?v=2&OID=3531&CC=7616

What is a park model? 

Below is a description from the RVIA:

On July 1, 2012, RVIA created a new membership category for manufacturers of park model RVs (PMRVs). A park model RV (also known as a recreational park trailer) is a trailer-type RV that is designed to provide temporary accommodation for recreation, camping or seasonal use. PMRVs are built on a single chassis, mounted on wheels and have a gross trailer area not exceeding 400 square feet in the set -up mode. They are certified by their manufacturers as complying with the ANSI A119.5 standard for recreational park trailers.

PMRVs are most often used in recreational vehicle campgrounds. They may be owned by the campground and rented to guests, or they may be brought in and used exclusively by their owners on a site rented or leased from the campground. They can also be placed by their owners on private property. These RVs are used for recreational purposes only. They are not meant to be permanently affixed to the property, they do not improve property values in any way, and they are neither designed nor intended by their manufacturers to be used as permanent residences.

Two different types of park model RVs are offered. One type is less than 8′ 6″ in width and is designed for frequent travel on the highways while the other and more popular type is wider than 8′ 6″ (usually 12′ in width), and must be transported with special movement permit. The 8′ 6″ unit typically is expandable when it reaches its destination utilizing slide-outs or tip-outs. The wider units, being less mobile, are usually sited in a resort or RV park location for an extended term, typically several years. Park model RVs are titled as vehicles by the various states. This is because PMRVs are built on permanent chassis such that they can be and are moved either within a campground or between campgrounds.

Free Online Zoning Codes

Here are two sources of online codes:

  • Municodes from the Nation’s leading legal publisher.
  • The American Legal Publishing Company provides a free online library of state and municipal codes for most locations. Click on the map to go to the library and chose your state and city. Then search or scroll for descriptions of minimum lot sizes, setback rules, etc.

    American Legal Publishing Compay online library

    American Legal Publshing Company online library


    Information is available for all states except these 13: AL, CO, ID, KS, LA, MO, MS, ND, NV, UT, VT, WA, WY.