Septic Tanks - Residential Subdivision Builder

Incorrectly installed septic systems can harm water quality and make people sick, which is why South Carolina law requires site approvals and permits for all septic systems. 

If you are planning to build a large residential community with many homes, including manufactured homes, on property not served by a public or community sewer system, you must first obtain DHEC's approval and permits to install septic systems. Without these permits, your county will not be able to issue you building permits.

Before you buy land for new homes, call your local government to determine water and sewer availability. DHEC provides tips on choosing land suitable for septic systems and residential wells.

Subdivisions: Permit Needed for Subdivided Properties (10 or More Lots)

  • The Department will not perform a soil evaluation or prepare a system layout for any subdivision or portion of a subdivision with 10 or more lots.
  • Soil evaluations must be conducted by a Professional Soil Classifier or another licensed person qualified to practice professional soil classifying. The licensed professional is responsible for documenting qualifications. 
  • DHEC’s Onsite Wastewater Program is now allowing qualified contractors to perform soils evaluations for the issuance of Onsite Wastewater Permits to Construct. The contracting rate will be no more than three times the Department’s permitting fee per site. If you are interested in this program and you meet the qualifications spelled out in Regulation 61-56 Section 102.1 (2)(c), please submit your resume and/or CV and qualifications to David Vaughan, Director of Onsite Wastewater, or 803-896-8657.
  •  Proposed system layouts must be prepared by a Registered Professional Engineer or the same Professional Soil Classifier (or licensed person qualified to practice professional soil classifying) that conducted the soil evaluation.
  • The soil report and proposed system layout must be submitted with through our ePermitting Portal when completing the Online Wastewater System Application (D-1740). 

DHEC is Here to Help You

Use our Frequently Asked Questions for quick help answering common questions. If you have additional questions and need help, please call your local Environmental Affairs Office.

If you need to report a sewage complaint, use our ChatBot tool. Help is available 24/7.