By Pearce Adams
A Hall county couple
is hoping county commissioners show compassion by overlooking
a simple mistake that could cost them their home.
County officials claimed Linda and Arthur Pratt violated zoning
rules by obtaining a building permit for a modular home in
a residential area. Modular homes are prohibited in areas
zoned R-1, or residential. The Pratts said the error belongs
to the county.
The fate of the couple’s 2,190-square-foot home in East
Hall hinges on a favorable decision.
“They bought the home,” Commissioner Stephen Black
said at Monday’s work session. “We messed up.
It’s not their fault we did this.”
The commissioner’s decision at a 5 p.m. meeting Thursday
at the Georgia Mountains Center will decide whether the Pratt’s
can complete their home on 3.6 acres on Cobb Griffin Drive
near Gillsville Highway in East Hall.
Zoning and building officials reportedly erred last May when
they allowed the Pratt’s builder to obtain a permit
for the home in redential zoning. Modular homes are allowed
in land zoned agriculture and residential.
Senior planner Matt Tate old commissioners Monday the error
was a “simple oversight.”
The oversight led the Pratts to proceed, thing everything
They said they liked the modular concept in home construction
that was on display last spring at a home show in the Georgia
“We saw (the house), got interested and realized we
could afford more house for the same or less dollars,”
They obtain a six-month construction loan,
ordering the home and began building.
Hall County officials soon discovered the building permit
was a mistake.
The property’s original zoning limited development to
site-built homes. The modular home was fabricated at another
location and transported in two segments, which were assembled
at the home site.
A planning department report said the home “exceeds
county building standards.”
But officials issued a stop-work order in December.
Had they known the modular home was not permitted, she said
they would have built an 1,850-square-foot home instead.
Their builder, Building Systems Network, obtained the necessary
county approvals, she said.
“This was our fit home we attempted to build,”
Linda Pratt said.
We were so excited about the house. We did not cover all of
our bases. We’ve learned a lot.”