In 2019, the Texas Legislature passed House Bill 2439, a state law prohibiting local municipalities from passing ordinances preventing the use of certain types of building materials. By expanding the range of what can be used during construction projects, the law is intended to save Texas builders and consumers money on construction costs.
For the most part, municipalities throughout Texas now must allow any construction material that is permitted within national standards. There are a few exceptions written into the law, such as designated historic areas and ordinances concerning materials needed for windstorm or flood insurance. Some communities also have covenants that will stay in effect which will keep neighborhoods looking uniform.
While the provisions in the new law may save money on new construction for builders and consumers, and might also help material suppliers expand their reach, many people oppose the legislation because they feel it takes away the rights of cities and towns to set their own community standards. Others feel the legislation overreaches and unfairly benefits construction industry interests.
Exceptions carved out in the law include, among other things: (1) state or federal housing programs or other programs that require particular standards, incentives, or financing arrangements; (2) requirements considered necessary for a building to be eligible for windstorm and hail insurance coverage; (3) buildings designated as historic landmarks; or (4) municipal ordinances or rules relating to the installation of fire sprinkler protection systems.
Aside from the exceptions, the law does not allow local governments to prohibit materials that have been approved in the model building code adopted by Texas. Still, if you are considering a building or repair project, or might purchase a property with the intention to commence construction on it, you should consult with a knowledgeable real estate attorney to learn how construction regulations will affect you.
If you require assistance with a construction project or any type of real estate law issue, contact an experienced attorney at Hayes, Berry, White & Vanzant, LLP for help. We have offices in Denton, Flower Mound. Gainesville and Celina. Call us at 940-230-2386 or contact us online.
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