Photo by PoPville flickr user eakidwell
“Hello, We are new/newly returning to the area and have just started house hunting. In DC thus far we are exploring the takoma/brightwood/brokland/woodridge/riggs. We currently rent in Takoma DC and really enjoy the area. We are also looking in the close in downtown areas of Silver Spring & Takoma Park, MD. However, we would prefer to be in DC. But some of the housing/building information we are learning about DC is concerning.
I should note we are only looking at detached single family homes typically with lot sizes 4,000+. Many have a parking pad in front or rear off of a alley way. Some have a drive way running along the side from front to back. Most of the homes with parking off of the alley way look as if they may have had a garage at one time.
We were told by a Realtor that it is ‘impossible’ to build a new garage or covered parking structure any place in DC!?!?!?!?? This struck us as very odd that across a whole city no one could build anything new.
I have tried to look information up on DC.gov but can not find a clear answer. I’m not sure what information I need about a property to figure out what rules or zoning applies. It also seems that some rules have changed recently or are up for a vote to be changed?!?!?
So, anyone have any clear or helpful information? Is it really true no new car ports or garages Xn be built? What about types of driveways/parking pads (concert, gravel, stone pavers) )? Where do I start to navigate the DC building codes/zones???
Is getting other work done a issue major issue?
Either way we don’t want to buy a home thinking we can change this or that and then find out it is not legally possible!”
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