Frequently Asked Questions

Area Plans
Community Development
Displaying Address Numbers

How should I display an address number?

Please refer to the Addressing Ordinance pertaining to how and where to display address numbers.

Verify an Address

Can I receive a letter to verify my address?

Occasionally, residents need written proof of their address to give to their mortgage company, realtor, insurance broker, or banker.  Please submit a request using the Contact Us form.

Land Use Plan

What is the Land Use Plan and why was it created?

The Land Use Plan (LUP) gives a long term development vision of the City, as to what types of development can go in specific geographic areas.  This plan was developed with a significant amount of public involvement.  The Development Ordinance, particularly the zoning portion, is the main tool utilized to achieve the vision set forth in the LUP.  North Carolina General Statutes require that cities have a land use plan in order to support zoning decisions.

Board of Adjustment

What is the Board of Adjustment?

The Board of Adjustment is a decision-making body comprised of members appointed by the City  Council.  The Board renders decisions concerning the appeal of cases such as rezoning requests, variances, and special use permits.

Change a zoning district

Is it possible to change the zoning designation for an area?

The only way zoning can change is through the public hearing process.  The property owner who desires a zoning change must submit a Zoning Amendment Application (with the fee) to the Planning & Neighborhood Development Department.  The Department will follow a set procedure which involves notifying surrounding property owners, and presenting the request to the Planning and Zoning Commission which will conduct a public hearing concerning the proposal.

Historic Districts

Why does the City have a historic district?

A Historic District is designed to protect and preserve architecturally significant historic structures.  The district functions as a zoning overlay (on top of the standard zoning district).  Concord has three historic districts:  North Union, South Union and Edgewood. 

Historic Preservation Commission

What is the Historic Preservation Commission?

The Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) is a board of appointed citizen volunteers who make decisions concerning development requests within the historic districts.  Development within the historic districts is governed by the Historic District Handbook and Design Guidelines.

Planning & Zoning Commission

What is the Planning & Zoning Commission?

The Planning & Zoning Commission is an appointed board of volunteers that reviews all of the rezoning and certain development requests in the City.  This Commission also recommends changes to the Concord Development Ordinance to City Council. 

Speak at a commission meeting

Can a person speak at a board or commission meeting?

All Commission meetings are open to the public and any citizen may attend and speak in reference to any public hearing item.  Persons who wish to speak in reference to a case should sign in with the secretary prior to the start of the meeting.  Signing in is needed so that the chair may call upon each person who wishes to speak.  Comments are generally limited to 3 minutes, but the chair may or may not indicate a time restriction. 


If I signed up to speak and decide not to speak, what do I do?

If a person has signed up to speak, and decides not to speak, then it is perfectly fine.  Sometimes, a previous speaker has already said what the person signed up to speak was planning to say, so there is not much reason to repeat what has already been said.  When the person's name is called, the person can say that they wish to not speak or simply not respond.


Can disabilities be accommodated?

Absolutely.  Staff are happy to accommodate any speaker who has a disability.  For example, wireless microphones are available for those who use wheelchairs.  Staff can also read a person's written statement, if desired.


Board of Adjustment

Historic Commission

Planning & Zoning Commission


What is the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program?

The CDBG program is authorized under Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended.  The primary objective of this act is the development of viable urban communities.  These viable communities are achieved by providing the following, principally for persons of low and moderate income:
A.    Decent Housing,
B.    A suitable living environment, and
C.    Expanded economic opportunities.


What type of activities can be funded through the CDBG program?

Acquisition of property, public facilities and improvement (i.e. sidewalks, water/sever lines, streets), clearance and demolition, housing rehabilitation activities, code enforcement, economic development activities, funding assistance to community based development organizations.


What are the National Objectives for the Community Development Block Grant Program?

All of the activities that are pursued must meet one of three national objectives:
A.    Benefit to low and moderate income persons;
B.    Aid in the prevention or elimination of slums or blight; and
C.    Meet a need having a particular urgency (referred to as “urgent need”)

Down Payment Assistance

What is the Down Payment Assistance Program?

Through this program homebuyers can receive a depreciating loan of up to a specified amount to use for their down payment, prepaids or closing cost. 


What are the qualifications for receiving Down Payment Assistance?

In order to qualify applicants must be a first-time homebuyer and have an annual household incomes that do not exceed eighty-percent (80%) of the median income of the area.  A first-time homebuyer is defined as an individual and his or her spouse who have not owned a home during the past three years. It includes displaced homemakers and single parents.

  • Applicants must be pre-approved by a bank or financial institution for an adequate amount to purchase the home stated in their application. 
  • Applicants must also complete a homebuyer education workshop prior to the anticipated closing date.

The assistance is available in the form of a five year depreciating loan.  The loan will depreciate 20% per year for the next five years, at which time the loan will be considered paid in full.  The buyer must occupy the home for the five year period.  The sale of the property during the five year period triggers repayment of the down payment funds.   A Deed of Trust and Promissory Note for the amount of the assistance provided under the program will be used to secure the amount of assistance.  A Deed of Trust for the amount received will be recorded taking a second position no less than a third lien position.

Emergency Repair Assistance

What is the Emergency Repair Program?

This program is designed to assist low and moderate income homeowners make repairs to their homes that are urgent in nature or may cause an imminent threat to the health and/or safety of it occupant(s).


How do I qualify for Emergency Repair assistance?

Qualified applicants are selected on a first –come, first-serve basis with exception of life threatening situations.  The following are requirements for properties to be considered:

A.    Dwelling must be an owner-occupied, single-family home located within the City limits of Concord,
B.    Homeowner must have and income that is classified as  low –to-moderate as defined by HUD
C.    The dwelling must be in need of home repairs that are considered to imply an immediate property or personal risk to the occupants,
D.    Homeowner must have clear and marketable title to the property,
E.    The owner must be current with all City property taxes and utility billings.

NOTE:  A Deed of Trust and Promissory Note for the amount of the assistance provided under the program will be used for security.  A Deed of Trust for the amount received will be recorded taking a second position no less than a third lien position.  

HOME Program

What is the HOME Investment Partnership (HOME) program?

The HOME program was created by the National Affordable Housing Act 1990 (NAHA). 
The intent of the HOME Program is to:

  1. Provide decent affordable housing to lower-income households,
  2. Expand the capacity of non-profit housing providers,
  3. Strengthen the ability of local state and local governments  to provide housing, and
  4. Leverage private-sector participation for the development of affordable housing.

HOME funds are used for the purchase of vacant lots and for the construction of single-family housing units.  The houses built under this program are sold to buyers whose incomes are low-to-moderate as defined by the Charlotte Metropolitan Statistical Area.  


How can I qualify to buy a New Home from the City?

Applicants must be pre-approved by a bank or financial institution for an adequate amount to purchase the home stated in their application.  Down payment funds may also be available when purchasing these homes. 

Low-to-Moderate Income

How are Low-to-Moderate income guidelines determined?

The City of Concord utilizes the Income Limits Documentation system that is issued by the Department of Housing and Urban Development each year.  These income guidelines cover the Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC HUD Metro Fair Market Rent Areas (FMR).  The FMR Area contains the following counties:  Cabarrus County, NC; Gaston County, NC; Mecklenburg County, NC; Union County, NC; York County, SC.

Geographic Information System

What is GIS?

A geographic information system (GIS) is a type of information system that contains data about locational features.  It consists of specialized software and a wide range of geographic data.  One example of geographic data is zoning boundaries.  The department's GIS contains boundaries in the city that show the current zoning, such as residential, commercial, industrial, etc.


What is the purpose of GIS?

Planners use GIS to quickly and efficiently reference information pertaining to a wide range of information including zoning boundaries, addresses, streets, property information, floodplains, streams, topography, buildings, and aerial photography.  The system can also be used to make a wide variety of maps.  GIS is used in virtually all aspects in the Planning Department.

Zoning Map

How do I know what my property is currently zoned and what uses are permitted?

Every parcel with the City of Concord has a designated zoning classification.  Your zoning designation can be found by using the Mapping System on the GIS web page.  Zoning District descriptions and permitted uses can be found in Articles 7 and 8 of the Concord Development Ordinance (CDO).

Building Permits

Which agency issues building permits?

The City issues Zoning Clearance Permits for new construction, additions, interior upfits and accessory structures.  Cabarrus County Construction Standards issues all building permits for the entire County and all municipalities.  

New Business or Change in Business

Is a permit required for new ownership of a business or to occupy a business space?

Yes.  For a new business to occupy a space, follow the procedure for a Certificate of Compliance.  Please note, a Fire and Life Safety inspection will be required as part of this process. 

Sign Permits

Do temporary signs require a permit?

Most temporary signs require a registration. 


Do permanent signs require a permit?

Permanent signs require a Sign Permit.  Please refer to Article 12 of the CDO for sign regulations. 

Site Development

Is an application required to develop a commercial site?

For developing sites for land uses other than single-family residential, a Plan Review Application is required.  Please visit the Plan Review page for instructions.