Patios, Decks, and Porches

The following information pertains to patios, decks, and porches. 

Requirements for Patios

Patios fall under the category of landscaping and do not typically need a permit. By definition, a patio is a courtyard that is often paved and adapted as a recreation area or for outdoor dining. A patio can be paved, bricked, tiled, or made of rocks. A floating structure made of wood is considered a deck and will require a permit. If a patio is to include an additional structure such as a pergola or a retaining wall greater than 4 feet, a permit will be required for those structures. Please contact the Planning and Development office if you need further clarification.  

Requirements for Decks and Porches

The following are the code requirements for decks and porches (PDF).

General Requirements (International Residential Code 2009)

  1. Protect the house from decay at the deck connection to a minimum of 6 inches above the deck floor, section R 317

Stairways (section R 311.7)

  1. 3/4 - 1 1/4 nosing required for solid risers
  2. 3 feet in clear width
  3. handrails may project 4 1/2 inches into the required width
  4. maximum rise 7 3/4 inches
  5. minimum tread 10 inches (measured nosing to nosing)

Guardrail & Handrails (sections R 311.7.7 and R 312)

  1. handrail required when there are four or more risers
  2. handrail height 34" to 38"
  3. gripping portion, not more than 2" (cross-section) ( see section R311.7.7.3)
  4. guardrail is required if the walking surface is greater than 30" above grade
  5. guardrail height, minimum 36"
  6. construct guardrail such that a ball with 4" diameter can not pass through any openings

Applying for a Building Permit

The following documentation must be submitted before a permit can be approved and issued.

  • Submit a completed Building Permit Application (PDF).
  • Submit a completed Support Statement (PDF).
  • Provide a Site Plan showing the distance from the deck/porch/ramp to the property lines.
  • Provide a Framing Plan or meet with the inspector to go over the proposed project.

Submit Your Application 

Application packets may be submitted in the following ways:

The Planning and Development office is located on the fifth floor of Lebanon City Hall. 

Our mailing address is:

Lebanon Planning and Development
City Hall, Fifth Floor
51 N. Park St.
Lebanon, NH 03766

Our business hours are Monday through Thursday, 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. We are closed on Fridays.