FAQs: Patios


Is a permit required for a patio?

No. Patios placed on solid ground do not required a permit.


If I lay my deck on the ground without posts, is this a deck or a wood patio? Do I need a permit?

A wood structure which rests entirely on the ground is a wood patio, and no permit is required.


Is a guard required on my raised patio?

A guard is required when a raised patio is more than 30 inches above the ground below. A guard must meet all the requirements listed below.

  • The minimum height is 36 inches.
  • The top rail must be designed to resist a 200 pound concentrated load in any direction.
  • The infill must be designed to resist a 50 pound load over a one square foot area and constructed such that a four inch diameter sphere cannot penetrate.

For more information on a typical approved wood guard, go to the Fairfax County Typical Deck Details.


More Questions?

Please contact Building Plan Review via e-mail or telephone at 703-222-0114, TTY 711. You may also consult the Decks publication or the Fairfax County Typical Deck Details.


Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

ADA Accessibility | Website Accessibility
Awards | FOIA | Mobile | Using this Site | Web Disclaimer & Privacy Policy | Get Adobe Reader
Official site of the County of Fairfax, Virginia, © Copyright 2013

Website Feedback Website Feedback    Globe with various flags representing Web site language translations   Language Translations

Return to Graphic Version