Most signs are regulated by the county’s Unified Development Ordinance and some require a permit. For more information about sign regulations, refer to Sections 90 to 96 (pages 204 to 218) of the New Hanover County Unified Development Ordinance.
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Yes, the setbacks for a pool are dependent on the size. Pools under 600 square feet can be up to 5 feet from the side and rear property lines. Pools that are 600 square feet and larger must meet setbacks based on the zoning classification of the property. The setbacks apply to the pool depression of an in-ground pool and not to the concrete slab surrounding the pool.
No, the county’s zoning ordinance does not regulate fences. However, you should verify that the fence does not encroach into any access, stormwater, or utility easements, and if applicable, check with your neighborhood homeowner’s association (HOA) for any restrictions on fences.
No, please contact New Hanover County Animal Control Services at 910-341-4197.
No, please contact the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Department at 910-798-4206 with noise complaints.
The county zoning map indicates the zoning of all properties in the county. View the interactive zoning map.
Yes, a permit is required to operate a Residential Care Facility. A Residential Care Facility is defined as a home with support and supervisory personnel that provides room and board, personal care, and rehabilitation services in a family environment for not more than six resident handicapped persons. Residential care facilities require zoning approval and must be at least 2,000 feet apart.
Subdivision regulations are rules and standards adopted by the New Hanover County Board of County Commissioners that establish how land is divided into lots for development. Subdivision regulations also identify the county’s requirements for appropriate public infrastructure within the subdivision, such as access and streets, lot layout, utilities, water supply, and stormwater drainage.
View the county’s current subdivision regulations.
Home occupations may be permitted provided the following criteria are met:
Zoning regulations are rules and standards adopted by the New Hanover County Board of County Commissioners that establish the basic, common requirements for property development on an individual lot. Zoning regulations establish the different types of development districts in the county, such as residential, commercial or industrial, and identify appropriate standards for lot size, building placement, height of structures, and uses in those districts. Zoning regulations typically include standards for the basic design of features such as parking lots, landscaping, parks and open spaces, commercial lighting, and rural character conservation.
View the county’s current zoning regulations.
A Conservation Overlay District is meant to protect important environmental and cultural resources. The effective date of the ordinance (Section 59.4) is December 1, 1984.
New Hanover County’s new Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) will provide the community with a combined set of zoning, subdivision, stormwater, flood, and erosion control regulations in a single document. The creation of the combined UDO is not a new way to regulate development, but a better way to organize documents for the many developers, site designers, reviewers, residents, and decision-makers who use them. The combination of the county’s multiple sets of regulations in one document ensures that the rules of development in the county are easy to access, work in tandem with one another, and provide for the kind of development anticipated in the county’s adopted plans.
A variance is a relaxation of the terms of the Zoning Ordinance. Variances may only be authorized for height, area, and size of structures, or size of yards and open spaces. An application to obtain a variance can be found under Zoning Applications on the Current Planning and Zoning Overview page. Variances may be approved by the Zoning Board of Adjustment when the variance will not be contrary to the public interest, and, where due to the peculiar conditions of the property, literal enforcement of the Ordinance would result in an unnecessary and undue hardship.
If you are moving into an existing building, you will need to confirm if the property is zoned correctly for the business you would like to open. You will also need to apply for a change of use or occupancy certification permit with the Building Safety Inspections division. If your building requires any new construction, you will need to apply for a building permit with the Building Safety Department.