Do You Need a Permit to Build a Treehouse In Your Yard?

The answer to this question has a lot of factors. For instance, you have to ask yourself questions like:

  • Do you live in a city or rural area?
  • Is it a simple treehouse that won’t cause any problems for the neighbors?
  • Is it considered a commercial project?

This blog post will answer all those questions and discuss the need for permits as well. We will also explain how you can get a permit if it’s a legal requirement in your state.

Do You Need a Permit for a Treehouse?

Raise your hand if you’re excited about the treehouse you’ve been planning to build.

If your hand is raised, then we get the reason behind your excitation. We know a treehouse is a great way to bond with the family, especially with the kids. But before you start building one, you should first ensure that you’re legally good to do so. Here are a couple of questions you should answer to determine whether you will need a permit for your treehouse.

Will Your Neighbors Complain About the Treehouse?

Will your treehouse cause any issues for your neighbors? If it will, chances are that one of your neighbors will file a complaint and if you don’t have a permit for your treehouse, then it will likely be taken down.

To prevent that from happening, you can simply communicate with your neighbors before building your treehouse. If there’s anything you can change in the construction of the treehouse that will bring your neighbors on board, you should figure out a way to do it.

However, if a neighbor is being unreasonable, it’s best to just get a permit to ensure they can’t file a legal complaint.

Do You Live In the City Or a Rural Area?

In most states, there are no laws for building a treehouse in a rural area. So if you don’t live in the city, the chances of you needing a permit for your treehouse are slim to none.

However, just to be safe, you should read the local laws in your area.

Is Your Treehouse a Commercial Project?

Are you building a treehouse in your yard? If so, you may or may not need a permit. However, if you’re building a treehouse for commercial purposes, then you must get a permit no matter where you live. Otherwise, your treehouse will be taken down as soon as someone from your local government finds out about it.

Does Your State Require You to Get a Permit to Build a Treehouse?

As you can guess, different states have different laws on needing a permit to build a treehouse. So you should find out what your state laws say. Here are the laws for some of the most popular states in the United States

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In New York?

Treehouse rules are the same as shed rules for New York residents. This implies that if the structure is less than 10 feet tall and less than 120 square feet, no permit is required. One more thing you need to make sure of is that your treehouse isn’t visible from the road. Otherwise, your neighbors have the right to file a legal complaint against you.

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In Florida?

Treehouse laws are different for different areas in Florida. While there may be laws that require you to meet certain criteria in urban areas, most rural locations have no laws or rules regarding treehouses.

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In New Washington?

Do you live in Washington? Then you will be happy to know that you won’t need a building permit as long as your treehouse is less than 200 square feet and it is built for play purposes — not for living or commercial purposes.

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In Connecticut?

Most areas in Connecticut don’t require building permits for treehouses that are under 200 square feet. However, just to be sure, you should check in with your local council for confirmation.

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In Maine?

If you live in Maine, additional structures like sheds, gazebos, and the like require building permits. Since treehouses are typically considered an accessory structure, you will probably need a building permit for it.

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In Ontario?

If you want to construct a simple treehouse for a child to play in, you won’t need to obtain a permit for it in Ontario. However, if you’re planning on building a complex structure for living arrangements or commercial purposes, then you’re probably going to need a permit. You should check in with your local council for confirmation.

What Are the Treehouse Permit Laws In Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania doesn’t require its residents to obtain a permit for building a traditional treehouse. However, if the structure requires ground support to be built, such as pillars or posts, then someone from the council will visit your house and evaluate your plans. They will let you know about any changes that may be necessary and explain how you can make those changes.

How Can You Get a Permit for a Treehouse?

Here’s a step-by-step method to find out if your state requires you a get a permit for your treehouse and how to obtain it.

  1. Call your city council and ask them if you should get a permit for your treehouse.
  2. If they tell you to get a permit, then the first thing you need to do is familiarize yourself with all the treehouse requirements in your state. Those requirements may include details about the floor space of your structure, whether you will put up plumbing or electricity in your treehouse, and if your treehouse will be built near the property line.
  3. Once you’ve read all the legal requirements, make all the necessary adjustments to your plan.
  4. Submit your plan according to suggestions from your city council.
  5. Pay the necessary fees to get the official approval.


This post has thoroughly discussed the factors that determine whether you need a permit to build a treehouse.

However, if you’re still unsure whether you need a permit for your treehouse, then you should consult a lawyer who specializes in construction or zoning laws. They will help ensure that your project is legal and complies with all of the laws in your state.


  • Nathan Collins

    Having spent years working in the landscaping industry, Nathan Collins has cultivated a wealth of knowledge about the natural world. He is committed to helping others appreciate the beauty in their backyards, whether it's through identifying rare rocks and minerals or crafting the perfect landscape.

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