Raleigh, N.C. — The Senate voted Monday night to ban municipal ordinances that determine what a home should look like.
Senate Bill 25 would throw out any local design or aesthetic ordinances regulating the appearance, ornamentation, number of bedrooms or roof style of single-family homes or duplexes.
"The General Assembly has never specifically given local governments the authority to regulate aesthetics" such as exterior color or types of windows, said sponsor Sen. Rick Gunn, R-Alamance, adding that the requirements in some cities and towns "can add $10,000 to the price of a house."
"That's certainly not good for folks who are trying to buy homes," Gunn said.
He added that all zoning powers, including safety codes, would remain intact, and there are exceptions in the bill for historic districts and manufactured homes.
"It's just a fundamental principle that our great nation was founded upon: personal property rights," Gunn said.
Similar bills have passed both the House and the Senate since 2011 – "just not at the same time," he added.
The measure passed the Senate 43-7 and is now headed to the House.