4 Things To Know About Sign Permits

August 24, 2020

Signage is one of the most important marketing strategies for any brick-and-mortar business. It is used for identification, branding, advertising, and driving traffic to your door. That’s a lot of roles for a simple sign to fill, however, obtaining that sign is anything but simple. Beyond design and installation, permitting is a crucial factor in getting your signage up. Here are a few things you need to know about getting a permit.


As a business owner, you know that time is precious, and you never have enough of it. Unless you have permitting experience, you will need to take the time to learn how to find and understand sign codes in order to provide the paperwork needed to file your permit application. Moreover, if you plan to install the signs yourself, your township may not allow you unless you have the proper license. This means you will have to spend more time to find someone that is certified and provide insurance for them to do the work. That is time away from your business which will cost you money in productivity and profits. By using a sign professional who understands codes and permitting, you will be free to focus on your business which is ultimately your goal.


Sign codes and regulations vary not by state or even county, but by the township. Once you find the sign code for the right township, you must then decipher it. Sometimes it feels like you’re in the DaVinci code or need a math degree to understand it. It involves knowing your building or lot size and doing algebra to see how large you can make your sign. Sign code doesn’t just tell you how large you can make your sign, but where it can be placed, what type of sign it can be, how it should be built, and how much light it can emanate. All that information can be in a paragraph or expand across multiple pages. Frankly, it can be overwhelming at times.


Yes, unless you own the building, the landlord needs to approve your signage. They have their own requirements that can differ from the sign code. There may be size, color, sign type, and font specifications. Some landlords want a consistent look with all their tenants. Openly communicating with your landlord about your signs can build your rapport with one another which benefits you both in the future.


A rendering or layout of the proposed sign shown on the building is typically required to gain city approval. It involves taking photos and measurements to be used in design programs to give an accurate representation of what the sign will look like and how it will be built. In addition to the layouts, certified engineering drawings are sometimes required to confirm the integrity of the sign. Lastly, a landlord approval letter, completed permit application, and fee payment are needed to proceed.


After all that is said and done, it usually takes weeks or sometimes months for everything to be reviewed and hopefully approved by the city. If you conclude that you don’t have the time or energy to learn code and provide the required documents to apply for sign permits, your next choice is to find a sign professional to guide you through the whole process. This can include design and installation.

Egan Sign is the reliable, full-service sign professional that will get all your signs up across the US and Canada. We won’t just take your order but will guide you from beginning to end providing open communication throughout. We have a dedicated team that will take care of your surveys, permitting, layouts, manufacturing, and installation. Our goal is to let you focus on your business while we get your work done. At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide how much your time is worth. We, at Egan Sign, will support you either way.

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