You’ve got a beautiful fence picked out for your backyard. “But wait…” you think, “do I need a permit for this?”
Richmond Fencing Permit Requirements
The Richmond Permits & Inspections department states that a fence may not exceed 6.5 feet without acquiring a permit. 1.5 additional feet is allowed for posts, columns, and gates, totaling a maximum of 8’ for these elements.
With just a few exceptions, if your new fence is planned to fall within the two industry standard specifications of residential fencing (4 & 6 feet in height), you are more than likely in the clear.
The first exception to this is if your property is in a historic area. In this case, you will need to get approval from the Commission of Architectural Review. This is required to help preserve historical areas, buildings, and lots. If you aren’t sure if your property is historic, the Commission of Architectural Review has a helpful map on its website. There, you may also view their application forms, checklists, and contact information for further assistance. The second and last exception to this rule occurs only in zoning districts R-6, R-7, and R-63, and states that fences in the front of the property may not exceed 4 feet without a permit. They define front-facing fencing as any fence that lies between your home & the street. In these cases, the standard 6.5 feet rule, as mentioned above, still applies to the sides and back of your property.
Your Fence Will Require A Permit: Now What?
So that beautiful fence you had all perfectly picked out? Turns out it lies outside of the guidelines listed above. You are already set on the fence you chose, and can’t see yourself changing your mind. “I mean, c’mon,” you think, “it’s perfect.”
The good news is, the permit process exists for a reason! Just because your project doesn’t fall within the limits above doesn’t mean you can’t complete the project; you’ll just require a permit first.
How To Get A Permit
If you do find yourself needing a permit, you can find all the info you may need on the RVA.gov website. Visit the Permits & Inspections page for the appropriate information. If you’re looking to get a jump start on the process, you can download the permit application here.
Additionally, you can reach out to the friendly team at the Permits & Inspections Department by emailing PDRPermitsAndInspections@rva.gov. A special thanks go out to them for their courteous and prompt help in providing us with all the information used in this post.
Richmond Fencing Permits: Easier Than You Think
In most cases, you won’t need to worry about obtaining a permit to build your residential fence in Richmond, VA. However, if you find yourself needing one, the process is simple enough and helpful resources are readily available to you.