Frequently Asked Questions

    City of Live Oak Development Services

    (Located within the Fire Department & closed between the hours of 12:00 - 1:00)
    8001 Shin Oak Drive
    Live Oak, Texas 78233
    (210) 653-9140 ext. 2244, 2386 & 2250

    City of Live Oak Planning Department

    (Located within City Hall)
    8001 Shin Oak Drive
    Live Oak, Texas 78233
    (210) 653-9140 ext. 2261 & 2219

    Bridlewood Park Homeowners Association

    Great America Associates
    10003 N.W. Military Hwy, Ste 2201
    San Antonio, Texas 78231
    Local Phone: (210) 344-9200
    Local Fax: (210) 344-3137

    Retama Hollow Homeowners Association

    International Building Code
    1-888-ICC-SAFE (422-7233)

    International Conference of Building Officials

    5360 Workman Mill Road
    Whittier, California 90601-2298
    Local Address:
    9300 Jollyville Road, Suite 101
    Austin, Texas 78759
    (512) 343-9116

    Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners

    929 East 41st Street
    P.O. Box 4200
    Austin, Texas 78765
    (800) 845-6584

    City Public Service
    146 Navarro Street
    San Antonio, Texas
    (210 )353-3333

    Auburn Hills Homeowners Association

    12500 San Pedro Ave #325
    San Antonio, TX 78216

    The following information is set up in question and answer format, as if you were having a conversation with the Building Official. Some items may apply to you, some may not. We have tried to keep this information in a non-technical language as much as possible. Select definitions, with additional technical information, are included at the end of this page. If you have any additional questions or need any other information, please contact the City of Live Oak Building Department.

    Backflow Device

    Pictured is a typical residential backflow device.

    Their primary function is to prevent cross contamination of the city's potable water system. National water codes and guidelines call for approved backflow protection on all lawn sprinkler systems and the backflow protection be tested yearly and maintained in working condition. At installation, it is the property owner's responsibility to provide the proper Live Oak Backflow Test & Maintenance (T&M) form with the test results for recording purposes. Each year a letter and Backflow T&M report form will be mailed to the property owner as a reminder to provide the City with the annual test results.

    This is required by Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TECQ) and the following adopted Plumbing Code:

    International Plumbing Code-608.16.5 Connections to lawn irrigation systems. The potable water supply to lawn irrigation systems shall be protected against backflow by an atmospheric-type vacuum breaker, a pressure-type vacuum breaker or a reduced pressure principle backflow preventer.

    30 TAC 290 Subchapter D: Rules and Regulations for public water systems 290.44(h) (1) No water connection from any public drinking water system shall be allowed to any residence or establishment where an actual or potential contamination hazard exists unless the public water facilities are protected from contamination.

    Water Heater

    Pictured is a typical water heater installation.

    Residents often have questions regarding how a water heater should be installed. The above diagram is provided in an effort to answer some of these questions. Please note that the water heater should always be installed in accordance with the currently adopted plumbing code.

    Citizens of Live Oak are not required to have a permit for a weekend garage sale. If you have signs out advertising the garage sale, the signs must not be placed or affixed to any light poles, fences or placed in any easement. If you place the sign on private property, you must obtain permission from the property owner or homeowner. The signs must be removed no later than 24 hours after the garage sale. The signs must include the dates, location, and the time of the sale.

    Construction work may be done between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and sunset.

    Zoning ensures continuity between all construction in Live Oak. It sets regulations for things as diverse as lot size, minimum masonry veneer requirements, and height of buildings, for example. The Zoning Ordinance protects you by ensuring that your neighbors will not build a two story chicken coop right next to your property line, and that you will not return the favor. The Zoning Ordinance is available for purchase at the City of Live Oak Planning Department located in City Hall. A copy is available for review, also.

    Once your electrical or gas final has been approved, Development Service staff will contact City Public Service (CPS) and release your meter. Upon CPS's receipt of this information, the meter will be set when their schedule permits. You should usually allow 5 to 7 days.

    Approved Plans – The set of plans stamped and signed the Building Department Plan reviewer. No deviations from these plans are allowed without re-submittal. The approved plans must be on site at all times.

    Building Department – The Building Inspection Department of the City of Live Oak. The Building Department is located at 8001 Shin Oak Drive, at the corner of Oak Terrace and Shin Oak, in the Fire Station

    Building Footprint – The foundation outline of the house. Additions, or any other project that will require a foundation, will usually change the Building Footprint.

    Building Official –The person designated by the City Council to enforce certain codes and ordinances. The Building Official has designated certain people to do inspections and other related duties.

    Contractor – A person or Company you hire to do the work for you.

    General Contractor – The person responsible for coordinating the trades and getting the job done.

    Masonry Veneer – Brick, Stone, or stucco that is on the outside of the house and has no structural significance.

    Model Codes – Codes that are printed by a company that specializes in code writing. Model codes allow the City to adopt regulations without having to do testing on products. Model codes also allow the City to rely on the expertise of many different people worldwide, not just people on staff.

    Office of the Building Official – Same as Building Department.

    Permit Packet – Permit application, plans, plot plans, and trade applications, if applicable.

    Planning Department – The department in the City of Live Oak that is responsible for Zoning, and Planning. Located at 8001 Shin Oak Drive.

    Stop Work Order – A document specifying that the work being done has no permit. No additional work may be done without a permit.

    Trades – Skilled workers such as carpenters, plumbers, electricians, Heating & AC, etc.

    The following information is provided to inform you of more specific regulations for your project. Although they may be more technical, they are not intended to take the place or list every regulation of the codes. As with all information in this packet, these regulations are subject to change. Please consult the Building Department for possible new regulations.

    Some things to keep in mind as you look at Setbacks:

    FRONT SETBACK – Distance from the front property line to the front of the structure.

    REAR SETBACK – Distance from the back property line to the back of the structure or pool.

    EXTERIOR SIDE YARD SETBACK – If you are on a corner lot or cul-de-sac lot, this is the distance from property line at the street to the closest side of the house or pool. This setback may not apply to you.

    INTERIOR SIDE YARD SETBACK – Distance from the side property line to the closest side of the house or pool if you abut anything but a street.

    A fence may extend to the side and rear yard property lines, provided such fence does not exceed six (6) feet in height. Front yard fences may be placed on the property line provided it does not exceed three (3) feet. To replace an existing fence does not require a permit unless you are changing the footprint or placement of the fence.

    EXCEPTION: Fences located on reverse frontage property lines must not exceed three (3) feet.

    Each construction site or lot must have a properly maintained portable toilet. Two adjacent construction sites under common ownership and concurrent construction may share a portable toilet. All portable toilets must remain on the construction site throughout the construction process and must not be placed in the street, on a utility easement or in a right-of-way. Portable toilets must be periodically serviced to prevent unclean conditions and regularly monitored to ensure proper functioning and location. The portable toilet must be removed within two working days after construction is complete.

    Accessory buildings include private garages or bona fide servants quarters (not for rent but for the use of servants employed on the premises), etc. When the accessory building is directly attached to the main building, it shall be considered an integral part of the main building. When the accessory building is attached to the main building by a breezeway, the breezeway may be considered a part of the accessory building. When the breezeway extends into the required rear yard it, together with the accessory building or buildings, may occupy not more than 30% of the required rear yard. The floor area of all the accessory building on the lot shall not exceed fifty (50) percent of the floor area of the principal structure exclusive of breezeways and attached garage, provided; however, that this regulation shall not reduce the total floor area of all accessory buildings on one lot to less than six hundred (600) square feet and shall not apply to bona fide farm and agricultural buildings. Accessory buildings shall not be constructed closer than fire (5) feet from the side or rear lot lines.

    All construction sites must be kept clean. Trash and other debris associated with any construction may not be allowed to migrate to other lots, properties, or rights-of-way. Each new construction site must have a solid-sided trash container of at least eight feet square and four feet high. The trash container must be removed and properly disposed of without allowing the container to be overfilled. All trash or debris that drifts or spills onto the site, other lots, properties or rights-of-way must be picked up and securely placed in the trash container or otherwise properly disposed of on a daily basis.

    All construction of single-family homes, duplexes, and apartments upon completion must have at least three-fourths (3/4) masonry on the exterior walls. Any exterior walls fronting on a street must be 100 percent masonry with the exception of eaves, second stories, porches, trim, windows, doors, and other similar exceptions. The aesthetics value of the surrounding area shall be preserved. All construction shall blend into the surrounding neighborhood.

    Front Yard Setback – A front yard setback shall be a minimum of twenty-five (25) feet.

    Where lots have double frontage, running through from one street to another, the required front yard shall be provided on both streets.

    Where a lot fronts on one street and abuts another street in the rear, there shall be a one-foot non-access easement across the rear of the lot.

    Side Yard Setback – There shall be a side yard on each side of the lot having a width of not less than five (5) feet, except the side yards adjacent to a side street shall not be less than ten (10) feet. The projection of a roof eave into the required side yard shall not exceed eighteen (18) inches.

    Reverse Frontage – On corner lots, where interior lots have been platted, fronting on the side-street; a side yard shall be provided on the street side equal to the front yard on the lots in the rear. No accessory building on said corner lot shall project beyond the front line of the lots in the rear.

    Rear Yard Setback – There shall be a rear yard having a depth of not less than thirty (30) feet. A one story portion of a main residential building may extend into the required rear yard a maximum of ten (10) feet, provided the cumulative width of such extension is not greater than one-half (1/2) of the width of the rear yard determined as the minimum width within the rear yard setback. The cumulative combination of one-story extensions of main buildings and detached accessory buildings may not occupy more than 30% of the required rear yard.

    Concrete curbs and gutters within a street right-of-way that are removed to allow access to a lot shall be saw-cut at all construction joints or otherwise cut to produce a clean, even joint.

    The area between the curb and the sidewalk shall be excavated or filled to provide a uniform grade comparable to the adjacent street grade and shall be located so that ground level at the right-of-way line is no more than two feet, or less than three inches, above or below the adjacent curb grade.

    Expansion joint material shall be provided at intervals not to exceed fifty feet and where the new construction abuts the existing curbs or driveways. A minimum of two round dowel bars three-eighths (3/8) inch in diameter and eighteen inches (18") in length shall be spaced eighteen inches apart at each expansion joint. One nine (9) inch end of the dowel shall be thoroughly coated with hot oil asphalt or rod lead, so that it will not bond to the concrete; approved types of slip joints may be used in lieu of coating the ends of the dowels.

    Sidewalk ramps for handicap access shall be located at each intersection of a sidewalk and street.

    Sidewalks 3 feet in width are required along all residential streets. They shall be located at the property line and protrude into the right of way. Sidewalks shall be constructed at the time the house is completed. Sidewalks shall be a minimum of three and one-half inches (3 ½") inches thick with smooth, uniform and slip resistant finish.

    The address on the exterior of the residence shall be large enough to be plainly visible from the street. It shall be illuminated, at a minimum, by a 60-watt bulb. A weather resistant globe or cover shall protect the bulb. Such lights shall not be switched except by a timer or a light sensing device.

    Electric service must be in conduit from the meter box to the connection on the home. The conduit shall be 18" below grade or have 4" of concrete poured on top of the conduit and 12" below grade.

    Water line shall be 12" below grade and have an owner's shutoff valve adjacent to the water meter box at the customer's side of the meter.

    Sewer line shall be 12" below grade and have at least one cleanout at the property line or point of connection to the public sewer.

    Gas line shall be 12" below grade and have a protective coating. All gas systems shall be tested with at least 10-psi air test.