Building a home on Camano Island is a wonderful undertaking, but there are some different regulations. We have geological and archeological rules about shoreline and setbacks so it’s important to understand all the rules before jumping in.
Some of the first steps:
Login to the County’s interactive web maps
Use the right arrow to locate and select the Critical Areas Interactive Map. Type in your address, including
City in the bar at the top left of the screen. This will take you to the approximate location of your property.
Locate any potential critical areas on or within the vicinity of your parcel. If there are critical areas we will
be able to tell you, based on the information provided for your proposal, if you will be required to apply for
any land use permits prior to being able to submit for your building permit application.
Work with a septic designer to obtain a septic permit approved by the Health Dept. or provide a copy of
your as-built if one is already on file with the Health Dept.
Obtain an approved Water Availability Verification Form (WAV) signed off by Island County Health Dept.
NOTE: owners of lots served by a community well may have been told water is available however this is
not “water availability”. The WAV is to be taken to the “water purveyor” for signature and then submitted
to the Health Department for their approval.
Obtain or provide an approved access permit for lots directly accessing onto a County Road and/or for
private roads accessing onto a County road.
Building Permit Documents required for submittal
• Master Building Permit Application – filled out in INK
• One and Two Family Dwelling & Attached Accessory Structures Permit
• Two (2) sets of structural plans (see checklist), wet stamped if applicable
• Two (2) sets of engineering with an original wet stamp
• Plot Plan drawn to engineering scale. At least 1 copy should be no larger than 11 x 17. Plot plan
samples are available.
• Copy of approved septic permit or as-built
• Copy of approved Water Availability Verification Form.
• Copy of approved Access permit.
A plan check fee will be required to submit the building permit. There will be a balance of fees due at the time of permit issuance.
How do I find out what the setback requirements are for my property?
• Contact Planning & Community Development for setbacks from property lines, roads, easements, and
other structures, shorelines, wetlands, streams, buffers, geologically hazardous areas and other critical
• Contact Island County Health Department for setbacks from septic tanks, drain fields, reserve drain fields
More information can be found at:
Camano Island is stringent on its tribal requirements and each area may have its own regulations about how far from the shoreline a structure can be built. “Residential development, including principal structures and all associated impervious surfaces, shall be located landward of the shoreline buffer plus building setback except as specified in this SMP or with the approval of a shoreline variance.” Read more at the Planning Regulation Document PDF
Have more questions? I can answer them! As a life-long Camano Island resident I can help answer any questions you have on lots, land, and home building on Camano Island.
Image by Tony Kent