Installing Fences

If you’re looking to put up a fence around your home or business, you’re in luck–it’s a pretty simple process that usually doesn’t involve the government at all.  Homeowners may install their own fencing, or, alternatively, pay someone else to.  Unlike many home improvement projects, fences don’t require design plans drawn up by a licensed professional or work permits from the Department of Buildings.  The only exception to this is if the building is landmarked, in which case owners must apply for a work permit from the Landmarks Preservation Commission.  While the DOB recommends hiring a land surveyor to ensure your fencing will be inside your property line, this is not mandatory.

Fences can be made of wood, plastic, brick or chain link.  Although city-wide maximum fence height is 10 feet, the NYC Zoning Resolution limits fences in residential districts to 6 feet.  Residential front yard fences may be no taller than 4 feet, and 6 feet on the side of residential corner lots.  In certain locations, like playgrounds, fences taller than 10 feet may be allowed.