Waste Water Management System … one year later

It has been one year since we first applied for a building permit in order to begin work restoring our once abandoned 100 year old farmhouse, and which also allow us to connect to the power lines. What has been accomplished during that year? Not much.
Red tape in the form of new laws which had recently been passed in VA making it more difficult to homestead, and a local government representative who has a reputation for being less than helpful has made this a long, stressfilled year.
We have finally learned that the new laws require that every home have a certified approved 1000 gallon septic tank, even if you will be using composting toilets. And, if the land doesn’t perc, a waste water filter system must be installed with the septic tank. Thus all waste water will first flow into the tank, leaving behind any solid waste, then the water will flow through the filter, a container filled with peat, and finally it will be free to flow out onto the ground, or pond, or wherever we decide to send it.
But, it still isn’t as simple as it sounds. First we must find an approved/certified person who will come to the property to inspect and make measurements and take multiple soil samples throughout the property. He determines whether the property will be perced or not. And where is the best location for the system.
He writes a report and sends it to a conservation design engineer who draws up plans for the system, which are then forward to the local VHD agent, who sends it to the State level for approval or denial.
Our guy told us that just about every home in the vicinity is in the same situation and ends up being required to get the same system installed on their properties. But, even with his encouragement, it isn’t a sure thing and will take about two months to learn the outcome.
End the end, if we get approved, we will be able to have our building permit immediately and will have a up to 2-3 years to install the system at a cost of about $14,000.
The goal here is to get electricity so we can start using power tools to work on the house, and outbuildings. I am no good at using hammer and nails, and much prefer using screws for construction.
We expect a confirmation by the end of April, if nothing else develops to slow things down again.
In the meantime we have other things to do, weather permitting.
We decided to use one of the rooms in the house as a storage room for our food stockpile and our household stuff which has been packed in plastic crates.  By building simple a simple shelving system we can store a great deal in a relatively small area.  This will help to empty the RV from all the plastic crates we have been storing inside the living area, and give us some elbow room.
While we wait for the permit, we will install wiring and insulation inside the house, and make or change some decisions on how we will finish the interior of the home.
So much to do, for this week, however, I will be continuing work to establish a garden.
Spring begins on time here, much sooner than it did at the CT home and I am eager to put seeds in the ground.

3 thoughts on “Waste Water Management System … one year later”

  1. What are you putting in your garden?

    How much space do you plan to use?

    Wishing you luck with your water system


    1. Hi Yvonne,

      The new garden space currently measures 30′ x 30′, I intend to expand later, after I see how this one develops.
      My goal is to have a huge tomato garden because it takes so many tomatoes to fill a jar. For now I will make everything fit into this 900 sf patch. Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, peas, beans, squash (summer and winter), turnips, beets, and hopefully some corn. In the fall I will add garlic, and any other fall planting crops I can find.
      Fingers crossed on the water management thing. If all goes well we should have our blessing, or denial, by the end of April.


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