Residential Building Requirements

In 2009, the Texas Legislature abolished the Texas Residential Construction Commission, eliminating State enforcement of statewide building codes - including building codes outside cities’ jurisdictions. In its place, the Legislature approved a law that allows counties limited, permissive authority to enforce building codes in the unincorporated area McLennan County adopted these provisions on October 13,2009 (PDF) Opens a New Window. . 

Therefore, after October 13, 2009, in unincorporated areas of McLennan County, all new residential structures and improvements to existing residential structures that increase the square footage or value by more than 50 percent shall be constructed to the International Residential Code (IRC). If a city has adopted building codes in their extra-territorial jurisdiction then the municipal regulation applies there. 


McLennan County does not have inspection authority or responsibility and can not charge fees; instead the builder is required to:
Notify the county of the location, approximate date of completion and version of IRC utilized for the new residential construction, see the Notice of Residential Construction In Unincorporated Area Form(PDF) Opens a New Window.
Obtain 3 inspections during different phases of the construction
Submit a notice of the inspections to the county and to the person for whom the new residence is being built, demonstrating compliance or non-compliance with the applicable building code, which is done by the inspectors, see the Notice of Residential Construction Inspection Compliance(PDF) Opens a New Window.

Failure to Obtain

Failure to obtain the inspections is a Class C misdemeanor and McLennan County may also file for an injunction against a builder who does not file the required reports. 

This new law does not give prior approval authority to the county for new residential construction, or authorize the adoption or enforcement of zoning regulations, and does not apply to manufactured, or modular housing constructed off-site and transported to a site. Penalties do not apply to a builder who intends to occupy the residence themselves as their primary residence.

Once complete, please send them to:
County Engineer’s Office
P.O. Box 648
Waco, TX 76703-0648