Architectural Guidelines

Article 5 – Building Requirements


The Architectural Guidelines are updated regularly. For the MOST UP TO DATE GUIDELINES, please consult the official PDF which can be found at the top of the main Architectural Guidelines page.

5.1 Architectural Standards: The design of all structures shall be predicated on the principles, ideals, and specific requirements, established in the Cannonsgate at Bogue Sound ARC Guidelines. Guidelines and copies are available on-line at or CAMS Management Company. The CARC may disapprove plans if in its judgment the massing, architectural style, roofline, exterior materials, colors or other features of the building do not meet these standards. No factory-built modular or mobile home type construction shall be permitted. NOTE: No slab-on-grade heated areas are permitted except as follows: Ground floor areas behind garages on an elevated floor plan can have heated areas as long as there are no unscreened doors facing the front elevation. In the “Charleston Section” no more than 600 SF of the lower level may be credited toward the minimum area requirement of the home.

There shall be no impervious improvements within designated wetlands.

5.2 Minimum Area Requirement: For all lots, the minimum area requirement for any residence shall be 2,500 heated square feet (HSF). Square footage for the purposes shall be measured in accordance with the North Carolina Real Estate Commission recommendations.

5.3 Building Height: No residence shall exceed three- and one-half stories above ground level. “Charleston” styled homes shall not be less than three stories. Entry floors for homes shall be a minimum of 30 inches above finished grade or sidewalk level, whichever is higher. A one-story home shall have the appearance, through its architecture, of being at least a one and one-half story home. In no case shall any building height exceed 50 feet. All homes in the “Charleston Section” shall have a minimum building height of 40 feet. All homes in the “Low Country Section” shall have a minimum building height of 28 feet. Building height shall be as measured from the lowest point of contact of the dwelling to the earth to the highest point of any element of the home except chimneys and spires. 

5.4 Roof Slope: The minimum roof slope over the main residence structure shall be at least seven (7) vertical to twelve (12) horizontal inches.

5.5 Exterior Wall Treatments: The materials listed below are acceptable exterior wall treatments for vertical and horizontal surfaces (except as noted). When used in combination, transitions from one material to another shall be made in an aesthetically sensitive manner such that the appearance and style of the home is consistent on all sides.


  • Wood clapboard painted or stained with minimum ½” butt, 4” to 8” exposure, terminating minimum 30” above finished grade.
  • Traditional Portland cement stucco in muted colors, natural, tinted or painted.
  • Wood shingle, with skirtboard or water table terminating 30” minimum above finish grade.
  • Board and batten may be used only in low country applications when used as accent or trim and not as a foundation element.
  • Brick.
  • Cement based siding board in a clapboard or shake profile. 4X8 Masonry Board is allowed on condition that joints are concealed. All siding must terminate in a water table or skirt board, 30” minimum above finished grade.
  • Anodized, copper or paint finishes are required on all metal surfaces including windows, flashing, drips, and caps, in colors matching the approved trim colors.
  • Soffits must be of wood, stucco or cementitious materials. Aluminum and vinyl soffits are prohibited.
  • Synthetic/foam products (EIFS) used on the exterior of buildings are not approved.
  • Gutters and downspouts shall be used at all eave lines unless deemed inappropriate and should be either aluminum or copper. Galvanized material is NOT permitted. Gutter color, if aluminum, should closely match the trim color. Downspouts must be connected to underground drain lines terminating on-site.
  • No vinyl or aluminum siding will be approved.
  • SPECIAL NOTE: All HVAC units and pool equipment shall be concealed by landscaping, or an approved constructed screen, from street view.


  • Wood walls shall have minimum 4” trim at corners and openings.
  • Frieze height shall be a minimum of 10” on masonry structures and 6” on wood structures.
  • Chimneys shall extend to the ground.
  • Window and door casing shall be separated from frieze by a minimum of 6”.


  • Foundation walls, piers and chimneys shall be brick, stucco (authentic), or stone, and must be a minimum of 30” high.
  • If not enclosed by louvers, the undercroft of decks and porches less than or equal to 5’ above grade, shall have vents sized and detailed as window openings on the foundation wall beneath the plane of the deck/porch. This requirement is not applicable for a raised slab foundation.
  • Piers shall align with columns.
  • Screening by louvers must be provided at the undercroft of all steps and entry porches.

5.6 Exterior Colors: Exterior colors are limited to the colors included in the Cannonsgate at Bogue Sound Color Pallet. These are the “Colors of Historic Charleston” for the Charleston themed areas of the community and the “Carolina Low Country Collection” for the low country homes. Color samples are available in the Sherwin Williams – Duron stores and on the internet. Exterior colors shall be equal to the colors shown on the referenced color pallets and must receive approval. Colors proposed otherwise will require that a variance be approved. The specific manufactured product shall be classified as Chalking Resistant or contain no chalk (e.g. calcium carbonate). All color selections must be complementary to one another.

5.7 Roofing:

Materials: Materials: Acceptable roof materials are natural or synthetic slate; copper; dimensional architectural asphalt shingles, equal to GAF Ultra HD, Owens Corning Berkshire Collection, Certainteed Landmark Pro, Certainteed Landmark Premium; wood shingles; metal shingles or metal panels. Barrel tile roofing materials will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. For any asphalt shingle not previously listed to be considered, the shingle must weigh at a minimum of 250 pounds per square. 


  • Principle roof: symmetrical gable or hip with slope 7:12 to 12:12.
  • Ancillary roof(s): shed, hip or gable with slope 2:12 to 9:12.
  • Flat roofs are permitted when enclosed by balustrade or parapet.


• Maximum 24”x48” skylights permitted on rear (side of residence permitted if next to buildable lot).
• Gutters shall be square or half round aluminum or copper
• Minimum roof projection in “low country” styled houses is 12”. Maximum roof projection in “Charleston” styled houses is 12”, except Italianate homes may project 16”.
The installation of solar panels is not allowed.

5.8 Windows, Doors, Shutters and Trim:


  • Windows shall be wood, framed in vinyl or aluminum clad, or Ultrex Fiberglass in clear glass or a tinted glass in gray or smoke colors.
  • Double hung, casement and fixed vinyl or fiberglass windows are approved as follows: Andersen 100 Series Fibrex; Certain Teed MW 9000 series (9540 or 9555); Jeld Wen Premium Vinyl 4500; Marvin Integrity Series; Pella 350 Series; Simonton Pro-Finish Master, Atrium Windows Series 450 with DP 50, YKKAP Style View Double-hung NLY Series or United Series 5900 series, Stergis Windgate Double Hung series, and PGT EnergyVue 5460 series windows
  • Jambs must be 4- 9/16” deep, minimum.
  • Other Windows an owner wishes the ARC to consider will be evaluated on a case by case basis. Please provide sample window and allow 30 days for the evaluation. “Single hung windows are not permitted.” Please contact the ARC for consideration of any window you wish to submit, c/o
  • Samples shall be submitted for gray and smoke glass colors for approval by the CARC.
  • Screens on porch enclosures shall be dark bronze or charcoal.
  • Window screen fabric must be dark bronze or charcoal color and cover entire window.
  • Single sash screens are not permitted.
  • Windows shall be trimmed/banded on the front side, and at the rear elevations.
  • Doors shall be of painted or stained wood or fiberglass.
  • Shutters shall be of wood or solid PVC.
  • Wood or masonry sills should project enough for drip kerf.
  • Masonry walls shall have expressed lintels or jack arches above openings.
  • The CARC must approve security treatments for doors and windows.


  • Windows shall be operable casement or sash of vertical orientation. Where screens are used, they shall be full screens.
  • Single Hung windows are not permitted.
  • Multiple windows in the same opening shall be separated by a 4” mullion. Pre-mulled windows with 4” mullions are acceptable.
  • Windows are to be installed on front, back and sides of homes, number and graphic alignment to be on a case-by-case basis. Houses on corner lots or curves in roads shall have full complement of windows on the exposed side.
  • Windows shall not be wider than they are tall
  • Muntins shall be of the same angled profile as, and coplanar with the sash, 7/8” maximum width.
  • Where SDL exterior muntins are used they shall be permanently fixed.
  • Windows and casings inset a minimum of 1.5” in a masonry wall.


  • Shutters shall appear to be operable and sized to match opening. Include hinges and shutter dogs.
  • Single bay garage doors shall be 9’-0” maximum width and 7’-6” minimum clear height.
  • Polygonal bay windows shall project perpendicularly from main structure a minimum of 8”.
  • Single door openings shall be 48” maximum.
  • Wood attic vents shall not be wider than they are tall and shall be trimmed as a window.

5.9 Screen Doors: Front screen doors are not permitted. Screening is not allowed at the garage doors and CARC approval is required for all other screen door applications. Screen door design and color must match and be generally accepted as complementary to that of the actual entry doors of the house.

5.10 Vents: Plumbing vents, mechanical vents and fans, turbine type attic vents and other similar types of vents must be painted to blend with the roof and siding. No vents shall be located on the front elevation.

5.11 Ceiling Height: In homes of two stories or more in height, the minimum ceiling height on each floor shall be 9’-0”. In one and one and one-half story homes, the ceiling height on the first floor shall be 10’-0”.

5.12 Deleted

5.13 HVAC Units: HVAC units may encroach on setback but must be screened from street view. Screening may be masonry walls, heavy wood screens or evergreens which conceal the HVAC units from view (not less than 6” below top of units and no more than a 12” gap in between). Window air conditioning units and through-wall units are not permitted. Note the offset requirements by manufacturers should be taken into account when setting the HVAC equipment pad and required screening wall.

5.14 Awnings & Overhangs: The installation of awnings or overhangs requires CARC approval. The awning or overhang color must be the same as or generally recognized as complementary to the exterior of the residence. Metal awnings are prohibited.

5.15 Deleted

5.16 Glass Block: Glass block on the exterior of a dwelling shall be subject to CARC approval. Glass block shall not be a dominant feature for the dwelling or elevation.

5.17 Covered Porches: All homes in the “Low country” style shall have a covered front porch, a minimum of eight feet in depth and are encouraged to have side porches. The front porch shall extend a minimum of 40% of the street façade. All homes in the “Charleston” style are encouraged to have front, side, or combined front and side porches, and rear porches. Porches in all cases shall be 8 feet deep as a minimum. Homes that do not have porches must have balconies that are braced and that front the street. Double Lot “Charleston Single” style homes whose main residence is constructed mainly on one half of the property as seen from the road may have a two-story side porch facing the open space side yard. Porch columns in every case shall be a minimum of 12 inches (square or round). Larger ground level columns may be required. Porches on all homes in the Charleston style shall be two level, and where the home backs onto a lake or community area, the rear porch shall be two levels extending across the rear of the home. Porch depth shall be eight feet minimum on front and rear. Porch steps shall be enclosed with slatted boards or brick and shall have closed risers. Lattice is not approved. Porch designs are reviewed on a case-by-case basis, with consideration given to architectural style of the home, and applicability to the Intent of the Cannonsgate ARC Guidelines. 

5.18 Screen Porches/Patios & Other Enclosures: CARC approval is required for the construction of covered porches, patios, and other enclosures. Such structures and their supports shall be substantial in appearance and reflect the style and architectural detail of the residence. Such structures shall be constructed of materials that are generally acceptable as complementary to the residence and be designed and installed as an integral part of the residence with rooflines that complement that of the principle structure. Any such structure must be located so as not to obstruct or diminish the view of or create an unreasonable level of noise for adjacent property owners. Such structures are not permitted on the street(s) façade. Construction shall not occur over easements unless specifically approved by the utility company having jurisdiction and must comply with the applicable governmental requirements. Screens shall be either dark bronze or charcoal.

5.19 Retaining Walls: Retaining walls shall not exceed 48” in height per wall at any location. Areas along the ICW may have a retaining wall up to the 404 line or VE line, whichever is further from the ICW. The wall should follow the 404/VE line. The wall shall not exceed 48” in height from ground to top of wall as measured on the ICW side. The walls shall be constructed of Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) or segmented stone. This standard is required in order to provide a uniform appearance along the ICW.

5.20 Propane and Oil Tanks: Propane or oil tanks located in yards, must be installed underground. Smaller gas tanks allowed by code, may be installed adjacent to a home, but must be screened from view.

5.21 Additions, Modifications & Expansions: Any addition, modification, expansion or similar alteration, including changes to the color scheme, of a previously approved residence, whether before or after the initial construction, is subject to the requirements of these Guidelines and must be submitted to the CARC for approval. Updated impervious area calculations must be included in the submission to the CARC.