Land Use, Building Permits & Shoreline Permits

Building

Frequently Asked Questions:

Click on this link to view the frequently asked questions in a pdf format, (which is searchable by clicking Ctrl F and typing in the word you are looking for). You can also read the same content below. If you click on the blue text it will open a new window with the information referenced in the text.

After reading this section, if you have any questions about building in Wahkiakum County email our Building Inspector Dave Hicks, hicksd@co.wahkiakum.wa.us or call 360-795-3067. 

To expedite a response to your questions please include the parcel address, or the parcel identification number and include information regarding what you intend to do with the property. If you do not know the address or the parcel ID, use the Wahkiakum County Web Map to locate the parcel.

We are generally able to respond to questions sent by email faster than over the phone.

Submitting Permit Applications:

When you are ready to submit your application for permits it is best to call ahead and confirm with our building inspector that you have all of the necessary documents ready to submit. If you show up to the office and are missing required documents then your application will not be processed. 

Schedule an appointment to submit the documents and pay for the permit application. If you show up to the office without making an appointment, our building inspector might be out inspecting properties and won't be available to answers your questions. 

Other office staff are not qualified to review permit applications, or answer specific questions related to permits, so we can take your application and give it to our building inspector to review when he returns, but we won't be able to confirm the fee or confirm that you are not missing any documentation with your application.

 

Do I need a permit in Wahkiakum County?

1. Earth Moving: The State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) Checklist / Application is required for all earth moving / excavation. Reference the SEPA Ordinance, the Wahkiakum County Critical Areas Ordinance, and the Wahkiakum County Critical Areas and Resource Lands Assessment Application.

2. Land Clearing: The Wahkiakum County Critical Areas and Resource Lands Assessment Application may be required for land clearing. Reference the Wahkiakum County Critical Areas Ordinance. The Department of Natural Resources Forest Practices Application may be required for land clearing.

3. Building Demolition: The Southwest Clean Air Agency’s Notification of Demolition Application is required for building demolition. Contact Southwest Clean Air Agency.

4. Building Remodel: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for building remodels. The Southwest Clean Air Agency’s Notification of Demolition Application is required for structures built before 1978.

5. Building Structures: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for: houses, tiny houses, pole barns, sheds, or any other structure that will be converted to a permanent residence.

Permanent residences require plumbing, conditioned air, and need to meet Washington State Energy Codes.

Permanent residences require potable water and sewer or septic that is approved by Wahkiakum County Environmental Health Department prior to applying for a building permit.

The Wahkiakum County Building Permit Application is not required for structures that are only used recreationally, do not have plumbing, or conditioned air, and are detached from other structures. Recreational structures cannot be used as permanent residences.

6. Attached Structures: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for any structures attached to other structures regardless of if the structure will have plumbing, conditioned air, or will be a permanent residence.

7. Detached structures: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for detached structures if the structure will have plumbing, or conditioned air, or will be used as a permanent residence.

8. Tiny Houses: see Building Structures Frequently Asked Questions Above, and reference Labor & Industries Tiny Houses Information Packet

9. Pole Barns: see Building Structures Frequently Asked Questions Above

10. Recreational Vehicles: Recreational vehicles that will be used as permanent residences require their own potable water and sewer/ septic.

11. Fences: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for fences that are over 6 feet high. The Wahkiakum County Building Permit Application is not required for fences less than 6 feet high.

12. Foundations for a house: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for foundations for a house or mobile home.

13. Sidewalks, driveways, or patios: The Wahkiakum County Building Permit Application is not required for sidewalks, driveways, or patios. The County Road Approach Application is required for driveways that intersect a county road. The Wahkiakum County Public Works Department handles the County Road Approach permit application. Reference the General Services page, and the Standards for Road Approach.

14. Decks: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for Decks that are over 30 inches high, or are over 200 square feet in area. The Wahkiakum County Building Permit Application is not required for decks that are less than 30 inches high and are under 200 square feet in area. Reference the Deck Construction.

15. Docks: The State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) Checklist / Application is required for all work in the shoreline including new construction and maintenance. Reference the SEPA Ordinance. The Washington State Joint Aquatic Resource Permit Application (JARPA), is required for all work in the shoreline. Submit all applications to Wahkiakum County Building and Planning Department. Reference the JARPA Form Instructions and the example drawing.

16. ElectricalWashington State Department of Labor & Industries require an electrical permit for all electrical work in Wahkiakum County. The Wahkiakum County Building and Planning Department does not handle anything related to electrical, contact the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries with questions regarding electrical.

17. Gas stove, propane fireplace, HVAC, ductless air pumps, heat pump replacement, cooling towers, air handlers: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for all mechanical work.

18. Wood/Pellet Stove: The Wahkiakum County Building permit application is required for wood/pellet stoves.

19. Manufactured homes: The Wahkiakum County Manufactured Home Placement Permit Application is required for the placement of a manufactured home. Reference the Manufactured Home Permit ProcessContact the manufacturer of the manufactured home to obtain the details required on the permit application including foundation specification, engineered anchoring system, and approved septic and water source.

     Building Department Fee Schedule

     Deck Construction

     Minimum Design Code Requirements

International Codes 

2015 International Building Code

2015 International Residential Code

2015 International Mechanical Code

Washington State Energy Codes

Washington Code

Note: 

Use the 2015 code until November 2020. 2018 codes goes into effect November 2020.

 

Land Use

     Address (email address application along with a mapped location of driveway and house to         fullerl@co.wahkiakum.wa.us)

     County Road Approach (handled through the Public Works Department)                                         Submit permit application to: 

      tobinj@co.wahkiakum.wa.us and  jensend@co.wahkiakum.wa.us

Shoreline

     Shoreline Development- Department of Ecology and the Joint Aquatic Resources Permit Application (JARPA)