Home Buying in Chapel Hill>Question Details

Fernando Pet…, Real Estate Pro in 33950

What it means lot does not perk? Can you get a building permit anyway?

Asked by Fernando Pettineroli, 33950 Sun Jan 20, 2013

Help the community by answering this question:


It means you have no way to install a septic system. Septic systems are fairly common in Chapel Hill and require a leach bed. When waste leaves the home it goes through several chambers to be broken down and then the liquid eventually "leaches out" to the ground. If the lot doesn't perk, the waste liquid will not trickle down into the soil to be further filtered. Unless you can tie into a public sewer you will not be able to build on the lot.

There are some alternatives such as "irrigation" type that spray rather than leach. However, it is more difficult to get a permit and could be risky. Also, when you purchase a home with a septic system, you should request the septic map from the county and confirm that there is a septic repair area in case the leach bed fails in the future.

Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 20, 2013
what can you do on the lot, how about building a Storeage unit or garage. could that work on a lot with no perk?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 7, 2014
Thank you guys! Guys. I really appreciate the time and attention provided. The answer you provided speaks very high of you. I will be in touch soon as soon as I can make a move. Best regards.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 25, 2013
You've already gotten good answers to your question about building on a lot that does not perc. So I've included a link to a guide about septic systems. If you're looking at properties outside of where the city runs its sewer systems you'll find septic systems in use. The local department of Environment Health can also answer questions you have about septic systems.

Margaret Moore
Triangle & Coast Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
If the lot does not perc, it creates an enormous number of problems. You are really limited in what you can do if you get that result.

it depends on the size of the lot, if it is eight acres or bigger, you have some options. But a smaller lot creates problems that you probably do not want to deal with - if you have other choices.

Let me know if I can be of assistance if you are heading up our way from Florida.
All the best,
Reg Morgan, Broker, GRI, CRP
Coldwell Banker HPW
Check out my blog at http://www.ChapelHillRealEstateSearch.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 23, 2013
It means that the lot will not support a septic system so unless there's access to city sewer then no you will be unable to get a building permit, The lot lot would be essentially worthless. Marie Schering gave you a detailed answer about septic in general so there's no need for me to.

I have considerable experience with new home construction, and land acquisition and would be happy to assist you if you're looking to purchase here in the Chapel Hill area. You may contact me directly through my profile here on Trulia.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 21, 2013
A perc test (from percolation) is a test to determine the absorption rate of the soil to determine septic field limitations and therefore how many beds a building can support. Clay does poorly. . Guidelines may vary by county - check with the environmental dept and they usually share info about tests on file if you provide property address. A given property can have different areas tested depending on size - the one in question may not have been exhausted. Feel free to contact me and I can point you to the right resources.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 20, 2013
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