Fences & Fencing

Fences are an important part of a neighborhood.  They add a sense of security and privacy as they protect our yards and create a safe zone around our homes or businesses.  Richmond has a number of standards and laws related to fencing which must be followed to keep our neighborhoods looking nice and to avoid costly administrative fines and fees.  Please do your part to keep Richmond neighborhoods looking attractive.

The Richmond Municipal Code and the Richmond Zoning Ordinance regulate fences and fencing.

If you are planning to build a fence on a residential property a permit is required from the Planning Department. This is true regardless of the type or height of any fence.  If the fence will be more than six feet high, a building permit is required.  Richmond Zoning Ordinance 15.04.810.036
Fence Design
Fences can be constructed of wood, metal, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), masonry or other permanent materials designed for permanent fencing.  No more than two types of related fencing materials shall be used in any fence or wall. 

Fences cannot be constructed of barbed wire, razor wire, chain link, woven wire mesh, rope, cable, railroad ties, landscape timbers or utility poles.  Fences may not be electrified.

All wood fences shall be painted or stained, except when they are constructed of the heartwood of a decay-resistant species such as redwood or cedar.  All ferrous metal fences (except hot-dipped galvanized steel) shall be painted with a three-coat system consisting of a corrosion-resistant primer and two finish coats.  Richmond Zoning Ordinance 15.04.810.038

Commercial and Industrial Property Fences
Any commercial or industrial property may have a solid fence. All storage or maintenance areas must be screened from public streets by a painted, view-obscuring wood board fence or masonry wall of uniform material that is designed and constructed to withstand a 15-pound-per square foot wind load and deterioration resulting from contact with soil, vermin and weathering.

Refer to Richmond Zoning Ordinance 15.04.820.013 regarding standards for Low Solid Screens, High Solid Screens, and Solid Walls.

Fencing shall be continuously maintained. There shall not be any sign of disrepair. Fences should be periodically treated to maintain finish in a rust-free condition.