Back to Whatcom County home page Whatcom County | Departments | Contacts |  Help |  Search
 Planning and Development Servicesheader image
  PDS Home  | Building  | Code  | Fire  | GIS  | Natural Resources  | Permits  | Planning  | Calendar

Building Services

Building Home
Accessory Home

Docks / Piers
Exemptions from Permit
Pole Buildings
Pools & Hot Tubs
Retaining Walls
Required Forms
Required Plans
Submittal Process
Other Structures

Our Services

Building Services
Code Enforcement
Fire Marshal
GIS Maps & Data
Natural Resources
Permit Center
Contact Us

Quick Links
Applications / Forms

J.E. “Sam” Ryan, CBO

5280 Northwest Drive
Bellingham, Washington 98226
Telephone: (360) 676-6907

Exempt from Permit

Per IRC 105.2

1. One-story detached, non-occupied accessory structures without basements, used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses and similar uses, provided that:

  • The floor area does not exceed 200 square feet measured outside wall to outside wall.
  • Maximum eave overhang is 18".
  • Accessory structures maintain a minimum separation of six (6) feet between exterior walls, and a minimum separation of four (4) feet between eaves of adjacent buildings on the same property.
  • Provided that accessory structure meet all applicable setback requirements.

2. Fences not over seven (7) feet high.

3. Retaining walls that are not over 4 feet in height measured from the bottom of the footing to the top of the wall, unless supporting a surcharge.

4. Water tanks supported directly upon grade if the capacity does not exceed 5,000 gallons of water and the ratio of height to diameter or width does not exceed 2 to 1.

5. Decks, sidewalks, and driveways not more than 30 inches above grade and not over any basement or story below.

6. Painting, papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, counter tops, and similar finish work.

7. Above ground pre-fabricated swimming pools less than 24" tall, less than 5,000 gallons and are accessory to Group R (Residences).

8. Swings and other playground equipment.

9. Window awnings supported by an exterior wall which do not project more than 54 inches from the exterior wall and do not require additional support.

If you need further clarification please call the Building Services Division at (360) 676-6907.