Do I Need A Fence Permit?

Joe EverestFAQ

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Fence Permit? It’s something that can confuse many people and it’s all down to your location, your city and state. I suggest you check with your local authorities to what their requirements are and make sure you be extra careful with fences around pools, as they sometime have additional restrictions.

Fence Permits Depend on Where You Live

Permits tend to be required more in urban, metro areas—except when they categorically are not required due to height limits. Fence permitting is not universal. Some municipalities require it, others do not. The more urban and dense your city, the greater the likelihood that you will be required to permit your fence. Also, fence permits may be issued either on the city or county level.

Factors That May Trigger Permits

Fences that are 3.5 feet and 6 feet often trigger the need for fence permits. Setbacks often are 15 feet. Fence permitting depends on the type of materials, height, and location of the fence. In cities, you may find that fences of any height need permits.

A different scenario is that fences in the back of the home over 6 feet tall require a permit, and fences in front over 3.5 feet do require permits. For traffic safety and to prevent communities from becoming walled fortresses, planning bodies often require setback boundaries. For example, the planning department may forbid fences 6 feet tall from being located within 15 feet of the street curb.

Fence materials also can make or break a permit. In cities, it is difficult, if not impossible, to obtain permits for barbed wire or electric fences—no matter the height. Outside of cities, you often find that fences less than 6 feet tall do not require permits. The rural, unincorporated areas also give more leeway as to the type of fence, since farmers and ranchers tend to have special needs for barbed wire, electric fences and so on.