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Planning FAQ

Planning Faq

I want to construct an addition to my home. What permits do I need?
You will need a zoning permit from the Town of Awendaw Planning Department. In order to get the permit, you must bring:
1. a site plan of the property drawn to scale (on the plat) showing the exact location and size of the addition, all trees 18 inches diameter and greater and the 2004 FEMA flood zone;
2. complete set of full-size architectural drawings with the average roof height shown and measured from the base flood elevation OR the ground if not in a flood zone;
3. pdf of the site plan and architectural plans (planning.awendaw@tds.net);
4. list of all subcontractors.

5. Affidavit of Ownership;
6. Action Statement.
Will the Town of Awendaw issue building permits?
No, Charleston County Building Services Department issues building permits after the Town has issued a zoning permit for the new construction. Charleston County will also conduct construction inspections throughout the construction process.
I want to build a new home or move a mobile home onto land in Awendaw. What do I need to get this approved?
The first step is to obtain a DHEC septic permit which requires obtaining a zoning permit from Awendaw Planning Department. For the zoning permit, you must provide:
1. a site plan of the property drawn to scale (on the plat) showing the exact location of the proposed mobile home, all trees 18 inches diameter and greater and the 2004 FEMA flood zone;
2. Affidavit of Ownership;
3. Action Statement.

For a new home, you will then take the zoning permit to DHEC. Once septic approval is obtained, bring a copy of the permit to Awendaw Planning along with:
1. site plan of the property drawn to scale (on the plat) showing the exact location and size of the home, all trees 18 inches diameter and greater and the 2004 FEMA flood zone;
2. complete set of full-size architectural drawings with the average roof height shown and measured from the base flood elevation OR the ground if not in a flood zone;
3. pdf of the site plan and architectural plans (planning.awendaw@tds.net);
4. list of all subcontractors.
Awendaw will issue a zoning permit which applicant/builder will take to Charleston County for the building permit.


For a mobile home, you will then take the zoning permit to DHEC. Once septic approval is obtained, bring a copy of the permit to Awendaw Planning along with:
1. a site plan of the property drawn to scale (on the plat) showing the exact location and size of the mobile home, all trees 18 inches diameter and greater and the 2004 FEMA flood zone;

Awendaw will issue a zoning permit which applicant/builder will take to Charleston County for the building permit.
I want to rent a vacant building for a residence or business. How do I get electrical service?
First, come to the Awendaw Planning Department for a zoning permit for a Building Safety Inspection. Any building that has been vacant for any amount of time must have a Building Safety Inspection conducted by Charleston County Building Services.  The Town requires:
1. a description of the proposed use;
2. Action Statement signed by owner and notarized.
I want to renovate a residence or business. What permits do I need?
In order to do any work on any building in Awendaw, you start by obtaining a zoning permit from Awendaw Planning Department. Once you have the zoning permit, you take that to Charleston County Building Services for the construction permit. For the Zoning permit the Town requires:
1. a description of the work to be done;
2. a description of the business if a new buisness;
3. a complete list of subcontractors.
I want to subdivide my land. How do I do this?
Call the Awendaw Planning Department (843.928.4204) to check you zoning and to discuss the subdivision process. In general, it is recommended you have a conceptual subdivision plat reviewed by staff. Then you submit the preliminary plat with seven copies and the application and fee to Awendaw Planning Department.
How do I subdivide heir's property?
You will need to submit a letter from an attorney certifying who the living heirs are. Then you must submit a notarized document with at least 50% of the heirs approving the subdivision.
Who approves subdivision plats?
The Awendaw Planning Commission approves plats. The deadline for submittals is four weeks prior to the meetings that are on the third Monday of the month at 6 PM.
I want to conduct a small business in my home. Is this allowed?
The Town has a Home Occupation Ordinance that is designed to permit residents to engage in home occupations, while ensuring that home occupations will not be a detriment to the character and livability of the surrounding area. See Chapter 5 of the Town of Awendaw Zoning Ordinance. If your business is allowed, a zoning permit will be issued so that you may obtain a business license from Charleston County.
I want to change my zoning from residential to business. How do I do that?
Call the Awendaw Planning Department (843.928.4204) to discuss your proposal. Your request will be reviewed as it relates to the Town of Awendaw Comprehensive Plan. This plan is the long-range vision for the Town including where commercial and residential lands are recommended.
Do I need permits to clear my land?
Awendaw has an ordinance protecting trees 18 inches or greater (except pine trees) which means you may not remove these trees. You may seek a variance to remove these trees. If your land is over two acres, you must obtain a Land Disturbance Permit from the Office of Coastal Resource management (OCRM).
How do I open a new business in Awendaw?
To open a new business in Awendaw, a Town of Awendaw zoning permit is required. To request this permit, the Town needs a description of the business activity and the name of the business.  Typically businesses request to use a vacant building which requires a zoning permit for a safety inspection ($50).  Contact the Awendaw Planning Department to initiate this permit application.  A general contractor must take the zoning permit to Charleston County Building Services Department to request the County permit for the inspection.  Once the building passes the safety inspection, the County will issue an occupancy permit and Business License.
Does Awendaw issue business licenses?
Awendaw Planning Department issues a zoning permit for new businesses which you submit to Charleston County Revenue Collections.  Annual renewals occur directly with Charleston County Revenue Collections.

If you are a subcontractor on a job in Awendaw, you will expand your existing license when you get the building permit at Charleston County.  If your business is not local, you must do this in person at the County.  Call Charleston County Revenue Collections for the application.
How do I renew a business license?
If nothing about your business has changed, you renew it at Charleston County Revenue Collections.
I already have a business license for Charleston County and some other towns in the county. How do I expand my license to include Awendaw?
If you provide a service throughout the county and have a license, just expand your existing permit to include the Town of Awendaw (at Charleston County Revenue Collections).  If you are a subcontractor on a job in Awendaw, you will expand your existing license when you get the building permit at Charleston County.  If your business is not local, you must do this in person at the County.  Call Charleston County Revenue Collections for the application (843.202.6080).
I am a subcontractor on a construction job in Awendaw. Do I get a zoning permit and business license from the Town of Awendaw?
The Town does not issue permits or business licenses to subcontractors. You will get a building permit from Charleston County under the permit issued to the general contractor.  You will expand your existing business license when you get the building permit at Charleston County.  If your business is not local, you must do this in person at the County.  Call Charleston County Revenue Collections for the application (843.202.6080).
How do I determine my property's Flood Zone?
The Awendaw Planning Department has flood maps and can help you with this determination. If your property appears to be a V or A flood zone, we require a survey to certify the location on a site plan.
Is it ok to have horses?
In some areas (zoned Agricultural General) horses are allowed for personal use. You may not board others persons horses. You should check with DHEC for any state regulations. In order to have more than one horse, your land must have a minimum of 5 acres.
I want to add power to a shed on my property. Will Berkeley Electric add a power pole?
You will first need a zoning permit from the Town of Awendaw Planning Department. In order to get the permit, you must bring a site plan of your property drawn to scale (on the plat) showing the exact location of pole. The flood zone is required for this permit (see flood zone FAQ). Awendaw will issue a zoning permit which applicant/builder will take to Charleston County for the building permit.
Do I need a permit to build a shed?
A shed under 120 square feet does not require a building permit but must meet setbacks (call Awendaw Planning). If the shed is over 120 square feet, it must meet building codes therefore you start by obtaining a zoning permit from Awendaw Planning department (see FAQ above: I want to build a new home or move a mobile home onto land in Awendaw. What do I need to get this approved?).