​A minor subdivision is any subdivision of a parcel that creates no more than three lots with access to a private road that:

  • Creates no more than three lots with direct access to a new, existing or extended private road or to an existing public road;
  • Does not involve any new public road;
  • Does not involve the extension of public wastewater or water lines;
  • Does not landlock or prevent development of the remainder of the parcel or abutting property;
  • Does not create any new or residual parcels that do not comply with the requirements of this ordinance or other applicable state or local regulations; and
  • Is not located, wholly or substantially, in a flood hazard area.

No more than one minor subdivisions involving the same land may be applied for or approved within any five-year period.  

A minor-limited subdivision is the division of a tract or parcel of land in single ownership if all the following criteria are met:
  • The tract or parcel to be divided is not exempted under 19-30-2(B)
  • No part of the tract or parcel to be divided has been divided as a minor-limited in the 10 years prior to division
  • The entire area of the tract or parcel to be divided is greater than five acres.
  • After division, no more than three lots result from the division
  • After division, all resultant lots comply with all of the following:
    • Any lot size requirements of the applicable land-use regulations, if any
    • The use of the lots is in conformity with the applicable zoning requirements.
    • A permanent means of ingress and egress is recorded for each lot
Any subdivision not qualifying as a minor or minor-limited subdivision is a regular subdivision.
Note: Under State law, no proposed subdivision lot may be sold, offered for sale or developed until a record plat showing the lot has been approved by the County in accord with the appropriate process and has been recorded with the Wake County Register of Deeds.
Any person considering dividing their property into additional parcels for sale or development should first contact Subdivision Administration staff to determine whether such division is a subdivision and, if so, whether it is a regular subdivision or a minor subdivision.
Minor and minor-limited subdivisions involve a one-step review and approval process: Subdivision Administration staff approval of a record plat showing the final layout of lots, rights-of-way, recreation area and easements. If the subdivision involves a new, extended or improved private road, the process also includes review and approval of construction plans for the road and associated improvements.

Review Process

It is strongly recommended that any person seeking approval of a minor subdivision first contact Subdivision Administration staff, who will explain the review process and applicable requirements and standards and provide the necessary forms and checklists. This pre-application conference also provides an opportunity for the prospective subdivider and the Subdivision Administrator to discuss and agree on how the Subdivision Ordinance's neighborhood recreation area contribution requirement is to be met.

Initiation: After preparing an application (including the record plat and any road construction plans), the applicant must submit it to Subdivision Administration staff, using the submittal checklist to ensure completeness. 

Minor and Minor-Limited Subdivision checklist

Note: The fee for review of an application for minor subdivision approval is $200. Payment is due when map is submitted.

 Staff Review: After an application is accepted as complete, staff of County agencies involved in development review will review it for compliance with all applicable standards of the Subdivision Ordinance and with applicable recordation requirements.

 Subdivision Administration staff notify the applicant of the staff findings and, if appropriate, invite him/her to revise the application to address them. [Note: This is the only opportunity the applicant has to revise the application to address identified deficiencies. Any subsequent revisions must be submitted as a new application – with a new fee.]

Subdivision Administration staff may approve the application only if they conclude that it meets all applicable standards and requirements.
If the application is approved, the applicant must record the plat with the Wake County Register of Deeds within 15 days after the approval date and submit an authorized copy of the recorded plat to the Subdivision Administration staff; otherwise, the record plat approval expires.
Recordation of an approved record plat legally establishes the lots, dedications and obligations shown on the plat and authorizes sale of lots and the submittal of applications for permits necessary to develop the lots.
If the application is denied, the applicant may reapply or may appeal the denial to the County Board of Commissioners, provided the appeal is made within 30 days after the Subdivision Administration staff's decision.
For more information about subdivision regulations contact:
Wake County Current Planning/Subdivision Administration, 919-856-6216
336 Fayetteville St., PO Box 550
Raleigh, NC 27602-0550
FAX: 919-856-5824
Wake County Current Planning is located at the Permits/Plans Review Center, Mall level, Wake County Office Building, 336 Fayetteville St., Downtown Raleigh.