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Frequently Asked Questions

The material in this question and answer series is for your information only. It is not legal advice and is not designed to be used in place of legal advice. You should consult your own attorney for legal advice. The St. Joseph Legal Department provides this series to provide a general summary of procedures concerning violations of city ordinances in the City of St. Joseph, Missouri. It is issued to inform generally, not to advise of specific rights. As with any general information, the answers given here may not specifically apply to you.
How do I get a fence permit and what are the city’s rules for fences?

A fence permit application can either be obtained in Room 107 of City Hall, or online, on the Planning & Zoning Applications & Permits page. The rules for fences, including material and height requirements, are outlined in Chapter 31.

The city does not require an official survey for a fence permit application; however, the city does require a site plan, showing the location of the fence on the property (these do not have to be done by a contractor or other professional). 

The city recommends that all fences be built at least a foot into the property off of the property lines. This can help avoid disputes with neighbors and confusion of who owns the fence. If you plan to build on the property line, the city requires the signature of the owner of the shared property and the permit application be notarized.

The city does not enforce HOA requirements for fences within HOAs. If you are a member of an HOA it is important to check any regulations your HOA may have regarding fencing before applying for a fence permit. 

For requirements regarding the fencing of vacant lots, please contact the city directly for more information on how to apply for a fence permit.

Fences that do not or cannot meet requirements outlined in the code would either be denied a permit or could proceed by obtaining a variance or exception from the Zoning Board of Adjustment.

Show All Answers

1. What is Planning & Zoning?
2. What applications & permits does Planning & Zoning administer?
3. What is a subdivision or plat?
4. What is the subdivision process or platting?
5. How Do I combine, split, or adjust my property lines?
6. Does the city provide surveying services?
7. What is zoning?
8. What is rezoning?
9. How do I find my property’s zoning?
10. What does zoning determine?
11. How do I get a fence permit and what are the city’s rules for fences?
12. How do I get a pool permit and what are the city’s rules for pools?
13. How do I get a garage/shed/etc. permitted?
14. How do I get a sign permit?
15. What is a site plan?
16. What is the Zoning Board of Adjustment?
17. What is a variance or exception?
18. What is the Planning Commission?
19. What is the Downtown Review Board?