Brevard County, FL Fence Building Codes & Permits
Brevard County does not always require a building permit when erecting a fence. A permit is always required if the site is located within “Conservation, Historic, Landmark, SPI districts or other districts requiring a Special Administrative Permit.
Fences and walls which conform to the provisions stated herein shall be permitted by the Department of Environment and Community Development. Fences erected for agricultural purposes in the AG-1 District shall be exempt from permit requirements.
Easements: No structure with the exception of fences may be located in, or otherwise obstruct any easement. Fences shall be permitted within easements subject to the receipt of written permission from the easement holder. Approval of the Zoning Administrator and applicable County Department shall be required for all fences proposed for placement in easements which are held by Brevard County.
Brevard County Fence and Wall Standards
Walls or fences shall be permitted in any zoning district and are not subject to setback requirements of this resolution, except that in a residential zoning district:
(1) Fences constructed within the unincorporated area of the county shall conform to one or any combination of the following:
(1 a) Wood fences constructed of rot and termite resistive species of wood or wood chemically treated to resist rot and termite attack. All portions of a wooden fence shall display the finished side on the outside.
(1 b) Posts of pressure treated wood or non-corrodible metal and wire fences with a fabric of a minimum of 12½-gauge galvanized or other non-corrodible metal.
(1 c) Ornamental iron.
(1 d) PVC material.
(6) The utilization or installation of barbed tape, razor tape and/or razor wire and concertina barbed wire for fencing, partitions or obstacles is prohibited for residential fencing.
(7) It shall be unlawful to construct or perform any major repair on any fence in the unincorporated areas of the county without first obtaining a construction permit. All alterations and major repairs to fences where more than 50 percent of the fence will be repaired, replaced or altered, shall be considered new construction and shall meet the requirements of this article. In the event of declared state of emergency, the permitting requirements for the repairs to fences shall be waived for a period of 90 days.
(8 a) Prior to issuance of a construction permit for the installation of a fence the exact location of the fence and the proposed height shall be indicated on a copy of a boundary survey or other documents determined to be sufficient for review by the required review agency to provide evidence of the property line and submitted to the building official for approval. The type of materials to be used and construction details must be submitted. Prior to the issuance of a building permit, the proposed locations and heights of the fence must be in conformity with the zoning classification, the setbacks, and the lot and street configurations for the parcel on which the fence is to be placed or repaired. The applicant will have the right to appeal the construction permit denial to the board of county commissioners.
(8 b) Where a property owner plans to fence or enclose any utility easement, the owner must agree, as a condition precedent to permit issue, to hold harmless the county and any utility company and their respective employees, agents, official, and independent contracts, in both their official and individual capacities, if the fence or enclosure is removed or destroyed in the act of installing, removing, repairing or maintaining any utilities, or right-of-way.
(9) The height of a fence is measured from the finished grade of the property adjacent to the highest point of the fence. The height of fences on property lines or parallel to property lines shall be measured from the lowest grade on either side of the property line.
(10) No owner shall permit any fence located on their property to become dilapidated or structurally unsound.
(11) Any fence in existence on the effective date of this section shall be exempt from the provisions hereof; providing however, that pre-existing fences are subject to the requirements of paragraph (a) that any replacement thereof shall be in compliance with all the provisions of this section.
(12 a) No fence or solid wall on any property shall exceed six feet in height in any residential zoning classification, eight feet in height in any agricultural, commercial, industrial or tourist commercial zoning classification, or ten feet in height (12 feet with a binding development plan) in any commercial, industrial or tourist commercial classification where located adjacent to a residential classification. However, wooden fencing within any residential zoning classification may be constructed to an additional three inches in height above that otherwise established within these land development regulations (e.g. 3′ – 6″, 4′ – 0″, 6′ – 0″) in order to facilitate linear cap features along the top edge and airflow along the bottom edge. In addition to linear cap features along the top edge of wooden fencing slats and vertical posts, decorative cap features of up to eight inches in height may be added at vertical fence post locations. However, where a residential lot abuts a property zoned commercial or industrial, a fence may be erected to a height not to exceed that otherwise permitted on the abutting commercial or industrial lot. These height limitations shall apply to all fences or solid walls, regardless of location on the property, except where further restricted as provided below.
(12 b) No obstruction, including, but not limited to, signs (with less than eight feet between the bottom of the sign and the ground), fences, walls, hedges or other structures, shall exceed three and one-half feet in height within the sight triangle of a street intersection. The sight triangle, for the purposes of this section, shall be defined as a triangle which is at least ten feet in length along a local road or bike path, and at least 30 feet in length along a collector or arterial road. A portion of these restrictions may be waived at the discretion of the county manager or his designee if it can be shown that public traffic, bicycle and pedestrian safety can be adequately addressed with a smaller sight triangle.
(12 c) In residential, commercial and tourist commercial zoning classifications, fences or walls shall not exceed four feet in height within the required front setback or within the required side street setbacks on a corner lot which is contiguous to a key lot that is less than 100 feet in width. 6-foot-high side street fencing, when allowed, shall not extend toward the subject lot’s front lot line beyond a point even with the forward-most edge of the residential structure, excluding “snout” garages, porches or other features that protrude from the principal structure. In industrial and agricultural classifications, fences may be up to eight feet in height within the above described setbacks; except that, where such fence is within 25 feet of a street intersection or within 25 feet of the intersection of the subject property’s driveway with the street, that portion of the fence exceeding four feet in height shall be non-opaque.
(12 d) On double-frontage lots other than a corner lot or a waterfront lot, a six-foot fence may be placed on the rear property line adjacent to an arterial or collector road, and in such instances such lot would not be a double-frontage lot for setback purposes. If the abutting houses face or have access to the arterial or collector road, the exception set out in this subsection shall not apply.
(12 e) Berms within the front setback, or within 25 feet of a street intersection, used in conjunction with fences or walls, shall be considered as included in the height restriction for such fences or walls. The height of a fence or wall shall be measured from finished grade prior to berming. The parcel’s grade shall not be altered for the purpose of increasing the apparent height of the fence. The height of fences on property lines or parallel to property lines shall be measured from the lowest grade on either side of the property line. Where certain streets within the county have additional designated setbacks, subdivision walls, site perimeter buffer walls and other permanently constructed decorative structures shall be prohibited within such additional setbacks. Berms and landscaping may be utilized in lieu of such buffer walls and structures in order to accomplish site buffering.
(12 f) Walls and fences shall be constructed so that the exposed framing, stringers and posts which support each section shall face the interior yard of the lot on which the fence or wall is placed, regardless of whether or not another fence already exists. However, shadowbox designs which indicate alternately located vertical wooden slats on the interior and exterior sides of the horizontal stringers may be approved.
(13) In order for a tennis court to be an acceptable accessory use to a single-family residence in any residential zoning classification, a minimum of one-half acre, including the residence, shall be required for an unlighted tennis court. For a lighted tennis court as an accessory use to a single-family residence in any residential zoning classification, a minimum of one acre, including the residence, shall be required. The placement of any tennis court, backstop, nets, necessary supports and lighting shall be subject to all setback requirements applicable to an accessory structure in the particular residential zoning classification; provided, however, that the fence which serves as a backstop or enclosure for a tennis court may exceed the six-foot maximum for a fence in a residential zoning classification, provided that the backstop or enclosure shall not exceed 12 feet in height.
(14) Fencing contractor means any person or firm qualified and certified by the board whose scope of work is to manufacture, construct, install, repair, maintain, extend or alter fences consisting of metal, and wooden materials, pvc, or plastic components.
Fences & Walls Cont.
(Revised September 2009) The Zoning Resolution (Section 700) and the Property Maintenance Ordinance (Section 14-301) contain requirements about the location, height, material, and maintenance of fences and walls on residential lots. In addition, the Development Regulations (Subsection 7.4.6) contain restrictions about the construction of fences and walls in a drainage easement. All of these requirements are applicable in the unincorporated areas of the county.
Fences proposed to be located in the rear yard must not exceed the maximum allowable height of 8 feet. Fences proposed to be located in the front yard must not exceed a maximum height of 4 feet. Materials used for fences in the front yard must be ornamental in design and constructed with materials such as brick, masonry, picket or split rail. Chain link or other woven wire fences are prohibited in a front yard. Corner lots have two (2) front yards and the same regulations and restrictions on fences in the front yard apply to the yard areas adjacent to both streets. Fences and walls are not allowed to be located in the street right-of-way. Although only a professional survey can determine the actual right-of-way boundary line, in most cases it is the area approximately 11 feet from the back of the curb toward the lot.
Fences and walls constructed after 27 April 1999 are not allowed in a drainage easement unless written permission from the county is given. For further information about fences and walls in drainage easements, please contact the Stormwater Plan Review Section of the Department of Planning & Development at Planning Department at 321.633.2069 or Zoning Department at 321.633.2070 between the hours of 8 am and 5 pm, Monday through Friday, except holidays. Drainage easements are indicated on Final Plats of subdivisions that are kept on file in the Real Estate Records Office of the Clerk of Superior Court.
Fences may be placed adjacent to or on side or rear property lines. However, it is recommended that adequate room be provided between the fence and the property line for maintenance purposes without having to access someone else’s property without their permission. Barbed wire and electric fences are prohibited on residential lots less than 3 acres in size. All damaged or missing portions of a fence need to be replaced with comparable materials and shall be attached to the existing portion of the fence. Fences cannot be externally braced by a means of support other than the intended posts or other structural members. Building permits are required for fences greater than 8 feet in height (and provided a height variance is granted by the Zoning Board of Appeals at a public hearing) and for walls that are greater than 4 feet in height.
Violations of fence and wall regulations may be reported by calling the Police Services Quality of Life Unit Complaint Hot Line at 321.633.2086
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Where can I install a fence on my residential property? How tall can I build the fence? Is a permit required?
A. Each lot has a front, side and rear setback from the property line. Review the final plat of the subdivision to find the locations of these setbacks on the property. Although fences in the rear and side yards may be built up to the property line, it is highly recommended to offset the fence internally from the property line to allow room for maintenance to avoid crossing over to the adjacent property. Fences are allowed to be up to eight (8) feet in height in the side and rear setbacks. Each corner lot has two front yard setbacks, one from each right of way. Fences in the front yard setback are not allowed to exceed four (4) feet in height. A building permit is not required to install a fence 8 feet or less in height except a building permit is required for masonry and concrete walls which exceed 4 feet in height and function as a fence, screen, or barrier.
Q. Am I allowed to install a fence within a drainage easement on my property?
A. Possibly, although obstructions of any type including permanent structures are generally not permitted within drainage easements. Installation of fencing within a drainage easement requires approval by the Stormwater Plan Review Section.
Q. Is the homeowner required to be present at his/her residence during a scheduled inspection by a building inspector?
A. Either the homeowner or an adult representative must be present before an inspector can enter an occupied residence or fenced property. For inspection of an outside structure such as a deck, pool, or storage shed, the homeowner may place a note on the permit card granting the inspector permission to enter the property if he/she cannot be present during the inspection.
Fence Workshop™ supplies, installs and repairs the following fence styles in Brevard County, FL.
- Wood Privacy, Picket , Split Rail & Board
- Vinyl Privacy, Picket, Post & Rail
- Ornamental Metal, Steel, Aluminum & Wrought Iron
- Chain Link, Galvanized, Black Vinyl Coated, Temporary Panels
- Driveway Gates, Gate Openers, Access Control Systems, Entry Gates, Entry Systems
- Residential Fences, Commercial Fences, Security Fences, Dog Fences, Horse Fences
- Fence Installation, Fence Repair, Fence Rental, Contractors, Companies, Installers, Builders
(Fence Workshop™ is not responsible for the accuracy of this information. Visit Brevardcounty.us and Municode.com for the most up-to-date information on Brevard County fence building codes and permit requirements.)
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