Do I Need a Permit to Build a Deck in Houston?

Do I Need a Permit to Build a Deck in Houston?

Working with a construction company in Houston to add a deck to your home is a great way to increase its value and create the opportunity to spend more time outside.

There are some important things you should know about building a deck in Houston before you decide to do it. If you’re asking yourself – is a permit required to build a deck in Houston? – this article is for you.

Do You Need a Permit to Build a Deck in Houston?

Harris County explains that all development requires a permit to build legally. According to the county engineering department: “Development means any man-made change to improved or unimproved real estate, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations or storage of equipment or materials.”

However, according to the Houston Public Works Department, “Permits shall not be required for… uncovered wood decks, accessory to a one- or two-family dwelling that are not more than 30 inches above grade.”


Ultimately, you will need a permit to build a deck in Houston if your deck will be covered or higher than 30 inches. The Public Works department has a standard drawing available for use while building an elevated residential deck that will be attached to your home.

Do I Need a Permit to Rebuild a Deck?

If you are rebuilding a deck in Houston, the extent of your work will determine whether you need a permit.

The Harris County Engineering Department states that “Permits are not required under the following situation: routine maintenance and repairs to existing structure; residential accessory buildings or structures not located in A or V Zones with floor areas of less than one hundred fifty (150) square feet.”

So, depending on whether your rebuild is light enough to be considered a repair to an existing structure will determine if a permit is appropriate. If you’re doing foundation work for your deck, you’ll likely need a permit from the Houston Permitting Center.

Required Information for a Deck Permit in Houston

If you’re applying for a deck permit in Houston, you’ll need some specific information to complete an application. What you’ll need to complete includes:

  • Residential permit application
  • Site plan
  • Engineered drawings
  • Fill affidavit

Requirements may change slightly depending on whether your home is in a flood zone or not.

Can I File a Houston Deck Permit on My Own?


Do you need a professional engineer or contractor to file a deck permit, or can you do it on your own? According to the City of Houston, a structural building permit may be purchased directly by the owner of a house or property, or by an agent or a contractor. Thus, you do have the option to file for a permit on your own.

If you’re ready to get a permit to build a deck in Houston, you can start by filling out a building permit application form.

Obtain a project number from the city’s Permit Office. Then, you must verify your address and have your project evaluated. Finally, your plan will be reviewed. Once it’s approved, you’ll want to take a few more steps before you build, including getting utility releases and an optional certificate of compliance.

Where to Get a Permit to Build a Deck?

In Houston, to get a permit to build a deck you can apply to the Houston Permitting Center.

How Much Is a Building Permit for a Deck?

The price of getting a permit to build a deck in Houston depends on the valuation of your project. If your project costs between 1 cent and $7,000 the permit fee is $39.91. It increases from there as the cost of your deck increases.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Deck Permit in Houston?

Houston uses a one-stop process for building permits. If you have all your materials completed and ready, many building and improvement plans can be reviewed, and have permits issued within hours (the review time takes less than 30 minutes).

If you’re planning to add a deck onto your home or want to make other structural changes, and you want to know how to draw deck plans for the permit, consider using a professional company with lots of experience, like Rise Construction.

We are a design and build firm in Houston that can handle your planning and building needs. Our expert contractors can guide you through the administrative and permitting process, then get to work building the home of your dreams.

Get in touch with Rise today if you have any questions or you’re ready to get started.

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