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Buying A Yurt In FL/the South

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Old 04-22-2016, 06:45 AM   #1
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Smile buying a yurt in FL/the South

Hello! I am new to this forum and very excited that I found it! My husband and I would love to live in a yurt on our 11 acre property. We are almost afraid to call the county to discuss it because Im worried they will tell us a flat no (any pointers in that regard would be helpful!) The property is in the country and fairly secluded.

I was initially drawn to the Rainer Eagle because its so heavy duty (it seems that local gov would be more likely to okay it). Not to mention that Dana has been super helpful! However it will cost around $5000 to ship it. Is this plain foolish? I am less familiar with the companies in the South/East coast. Is it more intelligent to use a company down here, even if the yurt is less heavy duty than the Eagle. We have hurricanes here in South Florida...

ANY feedback would be helpful on this.Thank you!

Chelsea

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Old 04-22-2016, 06:48 AM   #2
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

Not sure if its worth mentioning, but our property already has a large 1600 square foot building on it (previous owner used it to store his airstreams). I think the building is coded as an animal shelter but looks more like a giant garage.
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Old 04-22-2016, 07:43 AM   #3
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

I would just ask them the possibilities. It can't hurt. I think people down South have an easier time getting these things permitted because

insulation

is rarely a factor. Most of the time they are more concerned about high winds, and yurts excel in high wind areas as long as they are properly constructed. Rainier makes excellent yurts and have many years experience in yurt making and even more so, the materials involved. They also provide stamped engineered plans (or at least they used to). Code enforcement types love that!

Keep in mind that the more "alternative" you get, the more push back you may receive. Code enforcement (CE) gets a little uncomfortable when you start talking composting toilets, rain water kitchens, solar ovens, etc.. If it were me, just give the impression that other than it being a yurt, the structure will be otherwise "normal" like other homes. That means it will be wired for AC, plumbed for septic/sewer, etc.. That doesn't mean you can't change that stuff on your own later on, but get your CO first, then worry about that stuff later.

If you don't ask them, you stand to spend a lot more money that you might have to otherwise. For example, they may be perfectly fine with a yurt, as long as it has a second door for egress or at least one standard glass window. If you just up and order one without this, you will have to retrofit the thing, which means you will probably have to hire that out and also chance hurting the yurt.

CE is usually hell bent on getting you approved within their policies, so don't be intimidated. Also, be as pleasant as possible and try to work through issues and don't take the first no as an answer. Keep pushing.

Please let us know how it turned out!
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Old 04-22-2016, 08:29 AM   #4
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

This is super helpful, thank you for taking the time to write it! I didn't even think about having to retrofit the yurt..
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Old 04-22-2016, 10:15 PM   #5
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

I would face the reluctance of dealing with building dept. in the eye so to speak. Get the info on what you want to do and write it down. Make a plan with your husband so you are both in agreement on every detail and then schedule a meeting with the building dept. Make notes and address the issues. Gotta face the music. Yurts are still oddball and they may or may not be up to speed on them. Be positive, be reasonable, be persistent, be respectful, but don't back off what your plans. They will respect your being prepared and having things written down. A plan. Good luck.
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Old 04-23-2016, 09:12 PM   #6
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

Thanks, Bob! I think you are right. Our country is a bit snooty so I am bracing myself for a negative response but I really really want to make this happen. Where there is a will, there's a way!
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Old 04-24-2016, 07:26 PM   #7
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

All the best on your yurt journey groveladderfarm! My husband and I are looking for land in South Australia to build a yurt. It is very disappointing that you can't do what you want on your land - it is the same here - we need council approval. Bob's advice sounds great - down here, it is better to submit plans with everything you want - including adding additional yurts to get it approved in one go. Not sure how that would work in FL if they are skittish though...also we are allowed only one dwelling per lot/title, which would mean connecting multiple yurts via walkways/awnings/etc, however there is a 'tourist industry' exception in some councils which allow more than one dwelling if it supports tourism in the area...
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Old 07-06-2016, 01:07 PM   #8
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

Hi GroveLadderFarm!

We LOVE the Low Country of South Carolina & are in the process of selling our home to buy land - running into lots of problems. Most don't know what a yurt is & when I explain, they just say NO & evoke the "180 days for temporary structure" line. Please let me know how it goes w/ FL's laws. I'll check this thread, or my email is vicki.howard11ATgmailDOTcom GOOD LUCK TO Y'ALL!!!
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Old 07-06-2016, 08:00 PM   #9
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

Thats's too bad. I'll call that standard bureaucratic red tape. At the very top of the priority list for dang near every govt employee is to follow regulations. Follow them day to day month to month year to year without screwing up on the regs and you'll get your retirement check for the rest of your life. Never heard any group of older gov't employee yacking in a bar or at a party without bringing up their retirement or perks. It is built right into their system. You won't find ANYONE that will buck it, if they want that retirement..
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Old 07-07-2016, 12:28 PM   #10
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Default Re: buying a yurt in FL/the South

I spoke w/ a lady yesterday that is going to check w/ her zoning specialist and said she didn't agree w/ the info I'd received about the 180 day rule. It may even work out that I can get land w/ a mobile home & build as many yurts as I want! I'll keep ya posted. South Carolina is a gorgeous state, but staying there can be pricey. They need a yurt campground and don't even know it!!! PAX!!
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