Hampstead Zoning Board Approves Variance for Deck

By Alex Malm

HAMPSTEAD – The Hampstead Zoning Board of Adjustment held its regularly scheduled meeting on Sept.1.
During the meeting the Board had one case, which was in regards to the building of a deck.
The applicants were James and Susan Burns who were seeking a variance to build a deck at their home located at 12 Island Pond Road. The variance would be needed in order to build the deck because it didn’t meet the required setbacks from the back property line.
It was explained by Burns that they wanted to build a deck in the backyard so they have more privacy. He said they currently have a “farmers porch,” on the front of their home but it doesn’t give them much privacy.
“We want to build a deck strictly because of privacy,” he said.
He said that the deck would be small.
“To have a 12×12 deck out back just to have a little bit of privacy would be terrific,” he said.
He said that currently the property lines are non-conforming in the back part of the property.
The proposal for the new deck would be 30.4 feet away from the rear property line and they are required to have 50 feet, which caused them to seek a variance.
It was asked by the Board what the deck would be like and Burns told the board that it would be open meaning that it won’t have any kind of roof or covering, would have railings all around it and would have stairs going down to the yard. He said he also hopes to have his grill out there.
Burns also explained that he didn’t think it would affect any of the neighbors. He said that he talked to his neighbors and they verbally told him that they were okay with him building the deck if he gets approval from the Board. He was asked if they submitted anything in writing for the record, which they didn’t. He said that if he knew it would have had an impact he would’ve tried to get them to submit letters for the record.
He also pointed out that neighbors’ properties would still be fairly far away from his deck.
“I don’t think it’s going to disturb anything back there at all,” he said.
No abutters spoke in favor or against the variance being granted during the meeting.
The ZBA ultimately voted in favor of approving the variance with the one stipulation being that the deck would have to be open, and uncovered which Burns agreed to.
The next Hampstead Zoning Board of Adjustment meeting is slated for Oct. 6 at 7 p.m.