Building Construction

The New Mexico Construction Industries Division is responsible for reviewing your building plans, issuing building permits, and inspections on site. Plans for buildings in Timberlake Ranch need to first have the approval of the TRLA Architectural Committee before sending them to the State. Most of the time the State will not look at your plans unless you have the TRLA approval stamp first. Our fastest turn-around times for State approval have been through the Albuquerque office. Submitting them to Santa Fe usually takes much longer. It is not unusual to take your plans in to the Albuquerque office and have them approved the same day. Check this link for general information, instructions, and forms.

The New Mexico Environmental Department is responsible for the supervision of septic tank system installations. Most local contractors will advise you about requirements and costs. They also have developed a long-time working relationship with the inspectors and this is helpfull for getting the job done in a timely manner. Check here for more information from the state of New Mexico.


It is TRLA policy to submit two sets of blueprints to the Architectural/Maintenance Committee, one of which will be retained by TRLA for future reference if necessary and the other returned to the landowner stamped with the TRLA Architectural Seal. After receiving TRLA approval, plans should be submitted to the Construction Industries Division for the State of New Mexico. If you have any questions please contact TRLA Architectural/Maintenance Committee Chairman for further information. We will make every effort to expedite the landowner's building permit process.



Wildfire Risk Reduction
(Posted 5-15-08) McKinley County Emergency Management & Walsh Environmental Scientists and Engineers LLC have completed the McKinley County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP). Cibola County CWPP has already been completed. Timberlake Ranch has been determined to be at extreme risk for wild land fire.
You may download the complete report here in PDF format. However, be forewarned the report is 80 pages long and an almost two megabyte file. If you don't have a fast connection it could take awhile.


    Choices, Choices, Choices--- You made a great choice on thinking about building a home in Timberlake!  Before you begin the process, we recommend that you have your property surveyed to alleviate problems later.

    There are many types of homes to think about:  Brick, block, wood frame, log, Deltec, dome, straw bale, adobe, metal and modular. All of these building types are here in Timberlake.  Just a reminder here, that we do not allow trailers for a residence, as per our CC&R’s.

    Do your homework on design, type and site layout. Spend time looking at your property as to views, access, water runoff, sunlight and where the well and septic system will be located.

    There are many good contractors in the area, ask around and get recommendations. Understand there is a big difference between a firm bid and an estimate. A bid is what the cost will be. An estimate is an approximate cost and can end up costing more. Any bid should not include the word "estimate" unless it specifically spells out what part is estimated. The contractor can ask for more money on an estimate and might file a lien if an agreement cannot be reached

    Get a clear understanding with your contractor(s) as any changes or add on's will cost money, so chose wisely. Remember to obtain the proper building permit(s) and get you plans approved by the TRLA building committee, they
 will check for property setback, size (over 600 sq. ft.) and conforms to all CC&R's.  Also, have all your plans approved by the New Mexico CID.  They will come out when called for all the various inspections.  Your contractor, plumber, and electrician should be familiar with them. Please be mindful of your neighbor and try to settle any concerns as to building location.

    Choices will be many: roof material, colors, building type, and plumbing materials (remember it gets cold here!).  Plan ahead as to size and electric requirements. Check with Continental Divide as to transformer size and what they will want as to meter pole location, etc. I recommend a 200 amp meter service panel as it will be expensive to go bigger later. I like Pex for plumbing as it is forgiving in case it freezes. Try to design your plumbing so that you can have a single drain point for ease in winterization.
  Go overboard on insulation as it will make your home more comfortable and reduce heating costs. Ask around and see what others would do different.

    Plan ahead as to septic system size (will you be expecting lots of company?) too small will cause problems.

    Need to clear your property or trim up trees? There is a burn pile for Landowners use. Please use it as burning on your property is not recommended and you certainly do not want to destroy the beauty here.

    Wells-- there are no guarantees as to depth, water quality, and gallons per minute or even success on hitting water. You may want to consider getting your well done first.  It is a major expense and getting that unknown out of the way first can give you peace of mind
.  My well is a little salty so we have to use bottle water for drinking purposes.

    Enjoy your journey and have patience and you will end up with a home to make your dreams come true!!