When Do You Need a Permit for a Shed?

In this post: Do you need a permit for a shed? All your shed permit questions answered!

Adding a shed to your backyard can be a great way to increase your home’s storage space. But before you start shopping for sheds, there’s one important question you need to answer: Do you need a permit for a shed? Depending on the size and location of your shed, you may or may not need a permit. Read on to learn more about the when and why of shed permits.

Do You Need a Permit for a Shed

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What is a Shed Building Permit?

A shed building permit is a document issued by your local government that gives you permission to build a shed on your property. In order to get a permit, you’ll need to submit a detailed plan of your shed to your local building department. Once your plans are approved, you’ll be able to pick up your permit and start construction.

What is the Biggest Size Shed without Planning Permission?

In general, you will only need a permit for a shed if it is over 200 square feet in size. However, there are exceptions to this rule. If your shed is going to be hooked up to utilities you may need a permit, regardless of its size.

Another time when you might need a permit is if you live in an historical district or other type of regulated community, like a community with an HOA. In these cases, even small sheds might require permits. If you’re unsure whether or not you live in a regulated community, your local building department should and/or HOA be able to tell you. 

Additionally, if you are located within city limits, your city may have different rules than the county. This is also why it is important to check both the city and county building codes.

Do You Need a Permit for a Shed if it is Under 200 Square Feet?

It’s possible that you won’t need a permit for smaller structures. But even these relatively small structures may still require permits depending on your municipality’s regulations. The best way to find out for sure is to check with your local building department before beginning any construction. 

Related reading: Our DIY She-Shed on a Budget 

Do you need a permit for a shed

Why Get a Shed Permit?

You may be asking, why do you need a permit for a shed?

While getting a permit may seem like an unnecessary hassle, there are actually several good reasons to get one before adding a shed to your property.

For starters, getting a permit ensures that your shed meets all of your municipality’s safety regulations. This helps protect both your family and your property in the event of severe weather or other natural disasters. 

Another reason to get a permit is that it can help avoid potential problems down the road if you ever decide to sell your home. Most home buyers will want assurance that all buildings on the property are up to code and have the necessary permits. 

What Happens if I Don’t Get a Permit for My Backyard Shed?

If you build a shed without getting the proper permits, you could face some serious consequences. These can range from having to pay fines to being forced to tear down the shed entirely. In some cases, you might even be required to pay for any damage that the shed causes to your property or to your neighbor’s property. 

For these reasons, it’s always best to check with your local building department before beginning any construction on a shed (or any other type of structure). This way, you can avoid any potential problems down the road.

Can I Build a Shed Myself?

You may be able to build your shed yourself, but this will likely depend on the size and complexity of the shed. Smaller, simpler sheds can usually be built by one person with no problem. However, larger or more complex sheds will probably require at least two+ people to construct.

Another factor to consider is whether or not you have the necessary skills and knowledge to build a shed. If you’ve never built anything before, it’s probably best to leave it to the professionals. Otherwise, you run the risk of creating a subpar shed that might not be safe or up to code.

If you do decide to build your shed yourself, make sure to check with your local building department first. They can let you know if you need a permit and can provide you with helpful information and resources.

Check out my favorite DIY shed plans here

Light Gray Cottage Style Outbuilding

When Should I Hire a Professional to Build a Shed?

You might want to consider hiring a professional if:

  • You don’t have the time to build the shed yourself
  • You don’t feel confident in your ability to build a quality shed
  • You need a large or complex shed built
  • Your municipality requires that sheds be built by a licensed contractor (rare, but can be the case in some areas)

Hiring a professional to build your shed can be more expensive than doing it yourself. But it’s often worth the extra cost to ensure that the job is done right.

Do you Need a Permit for a Shed Conclusion

Adding a shed can be a great way to increase both the storage space and value of your home. But before you start construction, it’s important to know whether or not you need a permit for your shed. In most cases, sheds under 200 square feet won’t require permits—but there are exceptions.

Sheds located in regulated communities might need permits regardless of their size. The best way to find out for sure is by checking with your local building department before beginning any construction projects on your property.

Getting the necessary permits may seem like an unnecessary hassle but, in reality, they help keep both your family and property safe while also protecting your investment should you ever decide to sell your home down the road.

Shop my favorite shed building resources on Amazon

Until next time,


Do you have any questions or tips about whether or not you need a permit for your shed? Share them in the comments below!


Do you need a permit for a shed?

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