Tan Vinyl Fence

A permit for your privacy fence can be a tricky question. In some districts, you may need a permit for any fence you erect. In others it may be just a single type of fence that needs a permit. Getting the right answer to the question may solve a lot of problems for you in the future.

At Fence Supply Online we often get asked by clients about permits for a privacy fence. It can be difficult to give a correct answer, without knowing all the circumstances. With this in mind, we asked our team of resident experts for their opinions on the question. As usual they came back with a few suggestions, and they made a lot of common sense.

Knowing when you need a permit for your privacy fence can depend on:

  • Asking at your local building permits office
  • Built-up areas often do need permits for a privacy fence
  • Are you putting the privacy fence out front or back?
  • The local Home Owners Association may have an opinion

Let’s take a closer look at each point.

Asking at you local building permits office

It may be obvious, but not everyone thinks of the local building permits office. Take a look online and find the one for your home. It is usually in the local town or city hall.

When you contact them, find the right person, and tell them exactly what you plan to do. They will need to know your design and if it matches the local laws. Often clients find that if they keep the fence simple, they may not need a permit.

Do not rely on your contractor or the friendly neighbor. Even with the best of intentions they can get this one wrong.

Ask before you build any fence.

Built-up areas often need permits for a privacy fence

A privacy fence in a built-up area is different from one in a rural setting.

There may be rules on where you can put a privacy fence where you are close to the street. A local office may require you to put in for a permit, so everyone has the same type of privacy fence. A street or block with a mixture of privacy fence types may cause problems for cars and pedestrians.

It may be your property, but a privacy fence may affect the whole district.

Are you putting the privacy fence out front or back?

Another question which affects property owners, though they may not be aware of it. There can be a world of difference in needing a permit, depending on where you erect a privacy fence.

If you are putting it out the front of your home you may very well need a permit. Laws on height, length, and type of material are in place for safety reasons when close to the pavement. A permit may be free to get, but you need to follow the strict rules.

Out the back may be different. Once you keep the fence below the 8-feet height and the neighbors do not object, there may not be a need for the permit.

The local Home Owners Association may have an opinion

The local HOA can cause you a few problems with a privacy fence that you may not anticipate. The regulations they impose on your district can be tougher than the ones around permits. If you get on the wrong side of the HOA, your fence may need to come down.

Always ask the HOA, even if the local building office tells you that you do not need a permit for your privacy fence.

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At Fence Supply Online we know about privacy fences.

Our experts can help with a project.

Ask for their advice.

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