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roofing permit

Does My Roofing Project Require a Permit?

March , 2023 | 6 min. read

By Cassie Findley

contractor drawing up roofing plans

Is there anything more joyful than a home improvement project? I mean, besides tropical vacations, puppies, and the perfect latte, what could be better? Okay, maybe there are a few better things you could be doing with your time and money, but, that’s not to say a shiny new roof replacement or small repair can’t be joyful. Before you break out the power tools and start climbing any ladders though, there's one thing you should know: you need a roofing permit. 

In all seriousness, permits are a necessary part of the roofing process to ensure that the work is done safely and in compliance with local building codes and regulations. So, whether you're planning a major roofing overhaul or just replacing a few shingles, it's important to check with your local building department to determine if a permit is required. RoofCrafters has been in the roofing game for nearly 30 years now, and we’ve got a knack for pulling permits, so you can sit back and relax, and maybe pretend you’re on a beach somewhere sipping your favorite cup of joe.

That being said, if you’re reading this article, it’s probably safe to say you’ve got an upcoming roofing project and you’re curious about what types of permits are required. You’re in luck because we’ll be discussing what a roofing permit is and if you need one, who’s responsible for obtaining it, and what regions of the country do not require permits for roof work. Let’s dive right in!

What Is a Roofing Permit?


First, let’s start with the basics by grasping what a roofing permit is. Essentially, a roofing permit is a legal document that is issued by your local government agency (such as the building department or code enforcement agency) that grants permission to you, the homeowner, or your contractor to commence a roofing project on your home within a specific timeframe. Permits are required to ensure that the work being performed on your roof is up to local building codes as well as safety standards.

roofing blueprint

So, how do you acquire said permit? Typically, your contractor will submit a detailed plan along with project specifications. Once that’s completed, a fee will be paid and your permit will undergo a review process to ensure that all of the plans comply with your territory’s regulations and codes. Once the process is complete and your permit is approved and issued, your contractor will get started on your project, making sure to abide by the permit requirements, of course. In some cases, inspections may occur at various stages of the project to ensure that the work being done complies with the approved plans. Sounds fun, right?

Do I Need a Permit for My Roofing Project?


So, does your specific roofing project require a roofing permit? Despite what the DIY deviant, Cousin Johnny has advised you who completes all of his own roofing projects under the radar (I mean,  I guess his rooftop pool is pretty cool), generally a roofing permit is required for any major roofing work that involves significant alterations to the roof.

Some common roofing projects that require a permit include:

  • Replacing more than a certain percentage of the roof area (such as 25% or 50%)
  • Adding a new layer of roofing material over an existing roof
  • Changing the roof pitch or the height of the roof
  • Making structural changes to the roof, such as adding dormers or skylights
  • Installing a new roof

However, minor roofing repairs, such as patching or replacing a few shingles, may not require a permit in some locations. To determine whether or not you need a roofing permit for your specific project, it’s always best to check with your local building department. They’ll be able to provide you with more information on the specifics of your region.

Will My Roofing Contractor Obtain Any Required Permits?


Are you responsible for obtaining the permit? Or is your contractor? In most cases, it’s the contractor's job to acquire any necessary permits for your roofing project. A reputable contractor who’s been around the block a time or two should already be familiar with the local building codes and regulations for your area. 

flatt roof roofcrafters

That being said, stay away from the Cousin Johnnys of the world, and instead invest your time and money into a professional roofing contractor. They’ll be sure to obtain any necessary documents before proceeding with your project and should offer proof of permit application and approval. If your contractor suggests you can save a few bucks by not undergoing the permit process, which is illegal and can result in numerous fines, it’s better to stop while you’re ahead, split ways and find a roofing company that's better established.

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What Regions Do Not Require Roofing Permits? 


It's important to note that building codes and permit requirements vary from state to state and even between local jurisdictions within each state. There are no states in the U.S. that do not require roofing permits at all, however, building codes are a different story.

Take Florida for example. The Florida Building Code (FBC) requires a building permit for the installation, repair, replacement, or alteration of any roofing system that is over 100 square feet in area, or that involves the removal or replacement of more than 25% of the total roof area.

So, while the specific requirements for obtaining a roofing permit may vary depending on the state and local jurisdiction, as previously stated, roofing permits are typically required for any major roofing work that involves significant alterations to the roof or the installation of a new roof. 

Do I Need a Permit for My Roofing Project?


In conclusion, roofing permits are an important aspect of any roofing project that involves significant alterations to the roof or the installation of a new roof. As you now know, the purpose of roofing permits is to ensure that the work is performed safely and in compliance with local building codes and regulations. While specific requirements for obtaining a roofing permit will vary depending on the state you're in, failure to obtain the necessary permits can result in fines, penalties, and other legal consequences. So, save your money for that tropical vacation instead of trying to dodge the permit process, deal?

Whew, that was quite a bit of information thrown your way! If you have any questions about permits concerning your own roofing project, it’s always best to get in touch with a professional roofing company. If you're eager to speak with one of our friendly estimators about roofing permits, go ahead and schedule your inspection down below. We'll reach out to you as soon as possible to schedule your appointment and clear up any confusion you may have. 

Schedule an Inspection

We also recommend downloading our "Top 10 Checklist" where we share the top 10 things to look out for when vetting contractors for your roofing needs, along with the most frequently asked roofing questions by homeowners like you and their answers. It’s incredibly important to prepare yourself for your first inspection, and with this guide, you’ll feel like a pro and know exactly what should be expected of the roofing contractor you choose to hire.

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Cassie Findley

My name is Cassie, and I’m the Content Manager here at RoofCrafters. I was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, and made my way out to Florida post-college graduation in 2021. I’m incredibly passionate about writing and creating valuable content with the collaboration of my marketing team. When I’m not working, I enjoy shopping (a little too much), spending time at the beach, and reading!