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How Long Does It Take to Get a Septic Layout Approved During COVID-19?

Septic Layout Approval for either a Custom Home or ADU

So today we’re gonna cover the time frame for getting a septic layout approval for either a custom home or an accessory dwelling unit through the county of San Diego.

The Normal Timeline Prior to COVID

So, this has significantly increased the timeline to get this done because of COVID-19. So typically, prior to COVID, we were seeing anywhere from a two-week timeframe, roughly two, three weeks max, and you can have approval to any time you actually had your engineering done or your septic layout, which was drawn up by maybe your septic contractor or someone in the county. They would take that two-week time frame to get that approval.

FourFold Increase From 2 Weeks to 2 Months

We’re now seeing it taking two months to actually get approval for the septic layout. So it’s increased fourfold as far as a timeline to get that done. The reason that’s critical is that let’s say you have a tight lot, like for an accessory dwelling unit, you’re putting a new accessory dwelling unit on the property that’s already got an existing primary dwelling. You’re not sure this is getting approved, it may not fit, it’s really tight. Get the engineering done, get it submitted, and get approval before you actually want to spend money, actually design the plans and submit that for a building permit. So really critical that it happens first in order to get that. To make sure you’re not wasting money on the plans and actually move forward with the project before we can get a septic system in.

Doing the Septic Layout Simultaneously

So they’re now saying, additionally, the plans are taking anywhere from five to eight months to get an approval for a building permit. So we’re talking from septic layout, if you don’t do it simultaneously, to where we have an issue with the lot, we wanna make sure the septic is good. We’re talking two months for the septic layout and we’re going another five to eight additional. So a significant increase in time where building permits before were taking two months. So that’s the same thing for custom homes. If you have a tough lot that’s actually got high groundwater, you’ve got to put an alternative septic system in.

Start the Design Phase to Get Ahead

If there are any other reasons it should be a problem that we foresee, you wanna get that septic approval prior to actually moving forward with the design and structure of the home. So it increases that time frame as well. You know, if we don’t have a problem, we could do this simultaneously, so we’re not losing much time. We can start the design. You know the septic is gonna be good. But you gotta get the septic layout submitted in on the very beginning. That way you’re actually getting those two things out at one time.

What’s the Latest in the County of San Diego

So the last layout submitted, it was in Escondido, was on July 16th. It’s now September 9th, 2020. And we are just now getting word that we may now have approval next week. So a full two months on a septic layout. That’s for an ADU in Escondido. That’s the switch-up, what’s happened, recently.

Shrinking the Timelines

We’ll keep you posted on what’s changing but right now we’re about to strategically plan on the front end on how to get these project timelines to shrink because of the longer timeframes that the county’s putting us through as far as the permit process.

Get More Information on Building a Custom Home or ADU

Hope that helps. If you want more information about building a custom home, building ADU, want pricing, we’ve got a ton of information on septics, all that is on our website. Go to tfgonline.com and you can download a ton of information, there’s a ton of information on our blog as well. All right, hope that helps.

Thanks again for your time and have a nice rest of your day.

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